The retina is the innermost, thin layer of nerve cells that lines the back of the eye. The function of the retina is to convert the light into neural signals and send them to the brain for visual recognition. The retina is a vital tissue, and retinal disorders may severely affect the sight and cause blindness, if not treated on time.
Risk factors are not required to develop a retinal tear, but they make the likelihood greater. These factors include Advanced age, Degree of myopia (nearsightedness), Associated lattice degeneration (thin patches in the retina), and Trauma. There is no way to predict who might develop a retinal tear or when it might occur.
Treatments differ based on the exact problem of vitreous. Dr. Sudhir Sudrik is a trained Vitreo-Retinal consultant who is proficient in dealing with the retinal disorders. The Clinic is well equipped with State-of-the-art equipment to diagnose and treat a multitude of Vitreo retinal conditions.
Flashes and Floaters (Posterior Vitreous Detachment)
Most flashes and floaters are caused by age related changes in the material that fills the eye (vitreous humour). When young, this material is thick and gelatinous, but with age, the vitreous becomes thinner and clumps and strands of protein can begin to float around in the eye. These clumps and strands may cast a shadow on the retina causing floaters. An increase or change in the size of floaters, the development or persistence of flashing lights or a veil-like blockage of a portion of the vision, require a prompt retinal exam to detect a retinal hole, tear, or detachment. Such a development may require immediate treatment to help prevent blindness.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration
Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD or AMD) is a disease that causes progressive deterioration or breakdown of the eye’s macula. The macula is that part of the retina which is responsible for your central vision, allowing you to see fine details clearly. Macular degeneration is a part of the body’s natural ageing process. It is quite common after the age of 65 years.
Retinal tear & Retinal Detachment
Tears can form in the retina, creating a risk of retinal detachment and severe loss of vision. A patient with an acute retinal tear may experience the sudden onset of black spots or “floaters” in the affected eye. Flashes of light (Photopsia) are another common symptom. If there is associated vitreous haemorrhage (bleeding in the clear cavity of the eye) or retinal detachment, additional symptoms can include blurred vision or a shadow as if curtains are closing in from the peripheral (side) vision. However, in some cases, a retinal tear may not manifest any noticeable symptoms.
Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP)
Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a potentially blinding eye disorder that primarily affects premature infants weighing about 2¾ pounds (1250 grams) or less that are born before 31 weeks of gestation (a full-term pregnancy has a gestation of 38–42 weeks). The smaller a baby is at birth, the more likely that baby is to develop ROP. This disorder — which usually develops in both eyes — is one of the most common causes of visual loss in childhood and can lead to lifelong vision impairment and blindness.
(ERMs), also commonly known as Cellophane maculopathy or macular puckers, are avascular (having few or no blood vessels), semitranslucent, fibro cellular membranes that form on the inner surface of the retina. They most commonly cause minimal symptoms and can be simply observed, but in some cases, they can result in painless loss of vision and metamorphopsia (visual distortion). Most patients with ERMs have no symptoms; their ERMs are found incidentally on dilated retinal exams or on retinal imaging such as with ocular coherence tomography (OCT).
A macular hole is a small break in the macula, located in the centre of the eye’s light-sensitive tissue called the retina. The macula provides the sharp, central vision we need for reading, driving, and seeing fine detail. A macular hole can cause blurred and distorted central vision. Macular holes often begin gradually. In the early stage of a macular hole, people may notice a slight distortion or blurriness in their straight-ahead vision. Straight lines or objects can begin to look bent or wavy. Reading and performing other routine tasks with the affected eye become difficult.
Flashes and Floaters (Posterior Vitreous Detachment)
The floaters usually become less noticeable with time and the patient often will adjust and “tune out” the floaters. Rarely, if the floaters are extremely debilitating to the patient, then vitrectomy surgery can be undertaken to remove the floaters.
After the age of 50, or sometimes earlier in nearsighted people or patients that have had eye surgery or eye injuries, the vitreous becomes more watery and can pull away (posterior vitreous detachment) from the retina causing an increase in floaters, bigger floaters and/or flashing lights. The tugging on the retina from the vitreous contracting causes flashing lights and can cause a retinal hole, tear, or retinal detachment.
Age Related Macular Degeneration
Treatment may slow down or prevent progressive loss of vision but may not bring the lost vision back. ARMD treatment plan includes Laser therapy & PDT, Anti–VEGF injections, Combination Therapy and Low Vision Aids. At Insight Vision, we house the best infrastructure and state-of-the-art medical equipment with an experienced retina specialist so that you can be assured that you are in the best hands.
Generally, ERMs are most symptomatic when affecting the macula, which is the central portion of the retina that helps us to distinguish fine detail used for reading and recognizing faces.
Although some macular holes can seal themselves and require no treatment, surgery is necessary in many cases to help improve vision. In this surgical procedure – called a vitrectomy – the vitreous gel is removed to prevent it from pulling on the retina and replaced with a bubble containing a mixture of air and gas. The bubble acts as an internal, temporary bandage that holds the edge of the macular hole in place as it heals. Surgery is performed under local anesthesia and often on an outpatient basis.