What is Retinal Detachment?
Retinal detachment is a big deal due to of the risk it carries for vision loss. Though not exceedingly common, it still happens in enough patients that you need to understand what is happening and whether or not it’s happening to you. The process leading to a retinal detachment begins with a retinal tear, which is followed by a small detachment that progressively increases in size. As the retina detaches from the wall of the eyes, it loses function where it is possible to lose part of your vision.
3 main causes of Retinal detachment
Tear/Hole develops in the retina
Usually changes in the vitreous of the eye occur as we age. The vitreous is the jelly that fills the hallow space that in the center of the eye. The vitreous is nearly 98% water. In youth, the vitreous is very uniform, but over time pockets of liquid form in the body of the vitreous causing it to progressively separate from its attachments at the back of the retina.
Inflammatory disorders, injury/trauma to the eye can cause a detached retina. In this type of detachment, the fluid leaks into the area underneath the retina, but there are no tears or breaks in the retina.
The so-called tractional retinal detachment can occur in advanced stages of the common complication of diabetes known as diabetic retinopathy. In diabetic retinopathy, uncontrolled blood glucose levels damage the small blood vessels called capillaries within the retina, causing changes in blood flow and weakening blood vessel walls. The weakened walls thus allow blood or fluid to leak into the retina thus causing severe damage to the eye.
Retinal Detachment Symptoms
- Seeing flashes of light
- Seeing “floaters” (small flecks or threads)
- Darkening of your peripheral (side vision)
Detached Retina Treatment
Retinal Detachment Treatment almost always requires surgery. There are several options when it comes to treatment, however the one for you will be determined by characteristics of the detachment of the eye.
Pneumatic Retinopex Treatment
The pneumatic retinopex treatment requires either a Laser or freezes treatment that is applied to the tear, and then a small gas bubble is injected into the eye to push the detachment back up against the wall of the eye. This is usually reserved for small-localized detachments, which are usually just an office-based procedure.
Scleral buckle surgery Treatment
Scleral buckle surgery Treatment requires the application of a piece of silicon that is wrapped around the eye and used to indent the wall of the eye to push it up against the retina. This allows for the joining of the two structures.
Vitrectomy Treatment requires that the jell within the eye to be removed and a large gas bubble to be injected which pushes the retina up against the eye. Laser and then freeze treatment is then used to seal the retina up against the all of the eye.
If you feel like you are experiencing any one of the retinal detachment symptoms listed above we encourage you to call Dr. Rosa Optometry today to schedule an appointment. We will make sure you get the treatment you need!