What is Retinal Detachment?
Retinal detachment occurs when the retina separates from its attachments to the underlying tissues of the eye, and is also a leading cause of blindness that can easily be prevented with early detection and treatment.
The retina is a layer of tissue in the back of the eye. Think of it as the wallpaper on a wall, or the film of a camera. The tissue absorbs the pictures for your brain to process, and in order for this tissue to function properly, it must be physically plastered flat against the back wall of the eye. When retinal detachment occurs, the picture is lost.
The condition usually begins with a hole or tear in the retina. This flaw allows fluid to travel underneath the retina, and like peeling wallpaper from a wall, separates the retina from the wall of the eye.
We recommend receiving an annual eye exam for people with the following risk factors for developing a retinal hole or tear:
- Severe nearsightedness
- Prior eye injury or cataract surgery
- Family history of retinal detachment
Thankfully, if a laser identifies a retinal hole or tear, doctors can begin a treatment plan to prevent detachment from occurring.
Detachment is not painful, so it is important to recognize the symptoms before your vision is permanently damaged. When you notice any of the following signs, come to the office immediately for an eye exam:
- Flashes of light, similar to the effects of a strobe light
- Dark shadow blocking your vision
- Sudden burst of moving black spots, known as floaters
- Complete loss of vision
Unfortunately, retinal detachment can sometimes occur in the absence of symptoms. However, with regular screenings and early detection, retinal detachment can be prevented and treated. Once the disease has progressed, your doctor may recommend surgery.
If you begin to notice the signs of retinal detachment or have suffered an eye injury recently, schedule your appointment with www.GAEyePartners.com to ensure your vision is protected.