University of Iowa Health Care

Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences

Peri-Vascular Lattice Degeneration

Eric Chin, MD

Photographer: Stefani Karakas

74-year-old female who underwent recent epiretinal membrane peel in the right eye. Intraoperatively, she was found to have several small retinal tears in the periphery which were lasered for prophylaxis.

  • BCVA: OD 20/20
  • IOP: normal
  • SLE: unremarkable
  • DFE: OD next slide

Peri-vascular lattice degeneration

Figure 1: OD: radial perivascular lattice with sclerotic vessels and hyperplastic retinal pigment epithelium

Peri-vascular lattice degeneration

Figure 2: OD: higher magnification of radial perivascular lattice

Peri-vascular lattice degeneration

Figure 3: OS: radial perivascular lattice

perivascular lattice degeneration

Figure 4: OS: radial perivascular lattice

Lattice Degeneration

  • Histopathologically represents localized areas of inner retinal atrophy with loss of the internal limiting membrane, adherent vitreous to the edges of the lesion with an overlying pocket of liquefied vitreous, and sclerosis of the remaining retinal vessels.
  • Lattice degeneration is seen in approximately 10% of the population, but rarely leads to rhegmatogenous retinal detachments.
  • However, lattice degeneration is present in 20-40% of rhegmatogenous detachments.

Radial Perivascular Lattice Degeneration

  • Lattice lesions with retinal thinning and pigmentary disturbances along retinal vessels may be referred to as radial perivascular chorioretinal degeneration.
  • Typically seen more posteriorly along retinal vessels in comparison to traditional peripheral lattice degeneration.
  • May be an incidental finding, as in this case, or seen with hereditary vitreoretinal degenerations such as Stickler syndrome in which there is a high risk for rhegmatogenous retinal detachment.


Byer NE. Long-term natural history of lattice degeneration of the retina. Ophthalmology 1989;96:1396-1402.

Lewis H. Peripheral retinal degenerations and the risk of retinal detachment. Am J Ophthalmol 2003;136:155-160.

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last updated: 11/26/2013
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