Most retinal detachments are a result of a retinal break or tear. Once the retina has torn, liquid from the vitreous gel can then pass through the tear and accumulate behind the retina – this buildup of fluid is what causes the retina to separate from the back of the eye.
Sometimes, retinal detachments can be fixed with an office-based procedure. However, the majority of patients will need surgery to re-attach the retina.
Retinal detachments can be detected in some cases when warning signs are caught early. The most effective means of prevention and risk reduction is through education of the initial signs, and encouragement for people to seek ophthalmic medical attention if they suffer from symptoms of a posterior vitreous detachment. Early examination allows detection of retinal tears which can be treated with laser, therefore reducing the risk of a detachment.