Retinal tear

The vitreous gel occupies the entire back portion of the eyeball. With age, the vitreous gel begins to liquefy and pull away from the retina, an event called a posterior vitreous detachment (PVD). Typically, this happens to everyone without complications. However, in a small percentage of patients, the vitreous gel is so adherent to the retina and pulls so hard on it that it creates a tear. If this tear is along a blood vessel of the retina, this may cause bleeding into the vitreous (called a vitreous hemorrhage) and can cloud the vision.

What are some symptoms of a retinal tear?

Flashes: Typically bright white or yellow streaks in your vision.

Floaters: Small dots, circles, lines, flies, or cobwebs that float across your vision.

Shadow/Curtain over Vision: Dark hazy shadow over a portion of the eye.

Decreased Vision: Decrease in clarity and sharpness in vision.

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What are some treatment options for a retinal tear?

Retinal tears can be treated with a variety of options. Typically, laser treatment is offered in an ophthalmologist’s office to seal the area in order to prevent retinal detachments.

What are some possible complications of a retinal tear?

Upon noticing symptoms like flashes and floaters, one should see an ophthalmologist immediately. Un-examined retinal tears can pose a serious risk, because fluid can enter through the tear under the retinal and lift the retina off, causing a retinal detachment, much like damp wallpaper peeling from the wall. This visually impairing condition will require surgery to re-attach the retina.

Photocoagulation Laser of a Retinal Tear

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