Retinal Detachment


What is Retinal Detachment?

The retina is a layer of tissue that is light-sensitive that lines the inside of the eye and sends the visual messages through the optic nerve to the brain.  When a person has a detached retina it means that the Retina has separated from the back of the eye. If untreated the retina may detach completely and this in turn will stop the visual messages going through the optic nerve to the brain.  This results in blindness.

In some cases there may be small areas of the retina that are torn.  Once the retina has torn, liquid from the vitreous gel then passes through the tear and accumulates behind the retina.  The build-up of this fluid is what detaches the retina, and can lead to a full retinal detachment.

Symptoms of Retinal Detachment

Symptoms of Retinal Detachment include a sudden or gradual increase in either the number of floaters, which are little “cobwebs” or specks that float about in your field of vision, and light flashes in the eye. Another symptom is when a curtain or veil appears to be over the field of vision.

Symptoms of Retinal Detachment can include: floaters, blurry vision, bright lights or sparks of light particularly in the periphery of the visual field, areas of darkness, shadow or shade in the visual field and a loss of vision.

 See your Doctor or Optometrist immediately if you experience any of these visual disturbances. A Retinal Detachment is a medical emergency and if left untreated can cause permanent damage to your eye sight.


Who is at Risk for Retinal Detachment

Some people are more likely than others to experience Retinal Detachment.

Retinal Detachment can happen at any age but is more common in people over the age of 40. It also affects more men than women.


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