Causes of a Detached Retina

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A detached retina is a medical issue that can usually be easily solved if caught in time. It is important to know the warning signs and symptoms of a detached retina so that a doctor can be called as soon as possible to take action. It is also significant to be aware of the different types of detachments.

Definition

  • A detached retina takes place when the retina is pulled away from its normal position in the eye. The retina's purpose is to send visual images to the brain. Therefore, when a retina becomes detached, vision becomes blurry. The retina's usual position is against the back wall of the eyeball. When the retina becomes detached, that is why it may cause some loss of vision. The retina may become detached all of a sudden, or it may peel away slowly, based on the cause and type of detachment.

Types

  • There are three different types of retinal detachment--exudative, tractional and rhegmatogenous. Exudative detachment often occurs from hypertension or inflammation. It has a high success rate of treatment as well as visual recovery. Tractional detachment usually occurs because of some type of eye trauma or previous surgery. Visual recovery is not likely from this type of detachment. Rhegmatogenous detachment is the most common type, caused most likely by increasing age. Visual recovery rate is high for this type.

Causes

  • A retina can detach at any age, but seems to be more common during middle age or later. There are certain ailments that may be more likely to cause retinal detachment. Some examples may be nearsightedness, glaucoma, a weak retina, history of detachment in your family, or trauma to the eye. It can also be brought on by diseases, such as diabetes or inflammatory disorders. Unfortunately, many times a retina can detach with no cause and no warning signs.

Symptoms

  • There are several symptoms of a detached retina, although there are rarely any warning signs that it is about to happen. Some symptoms include blurry vision, partial or complete blindness, shadows in the eye, flashes of light and floaters. Floaters look like little worms in the eye, dancing across the field of vision. Within a day of having these symptoms, a doctor should be contacted so that action can be taken. Left untreated, permanent loss of vision is a possibility.

Treatment

  • A retinal tear, which will most likely lead to a retinal detachment, may be repaired with a simple outpatient surgery in order to seal it back and stop the retina from detaching. If the tear does turn into a detached retina, there are three main types of surgeries for the repair--inserting a gas bubble to lock the retina into place, inserting a band so that the retina cannot pull away, or the removal of gel in the eye that may be tugging at the retina.

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