The retina is a thin, light-sensitive structure at the back of the eye. It contains photosensitive cells (“rods” and “cones”) that convert light energy into signals. The optic nerve then transmits these signals to the brain to complete an image. In the middle part of the retina is the fovea, which is the center of the eye’s sharpest vision and most color perception.
Detachment happens when it begins to separate from its underlying layer of blood supply, or the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Without the blood supply, it loses the oxygen and nutrients it needs to function. The RPE is also rich in melanin pigment, which traps the light rays instead of reflecting them.
Common Causes and Risk Factors
According to our eye doctor in Garden City, NY, retinal detachment may occur to anyone at any age. Nonetheless, it is more common in males aged 40 and above. Those who are severely near-sighted and had previous eye diseases or injuries are at increased risk as well.
If you or your family members have had retinal detachment before, you might want to take extra precaution. Cataract surgery and other eye surgeries are also identified risks to this eye problem.
Signs and Symptoms
Retinal detachment usually manifests with the appearance of “floaters,” tiny dots or streaks that float across your visual field. Sudden flashes of light, either in one or both eyes, may also be experienced. There may also be curtain-like shadows over your visual field, as well as blurring of your central vision and dimming of your peripheral vision. If you are experiencing any of these, it is advisable to seek medical assistance from our eye doctor in Middle Village, NY.
Prevention of retinal detachment starts with having regular eye examinations annually or at least every two years. These allow us to detect any retinal changes, such as inflammation, thinning, or tearing. It is also important that you protect your eyes from injuries. You can do this by wearing protective eyewear when working with power tools or when participating in contact sports.
Retinal detachment is a serious medical condition that could lead to blindness if not treated immediately. The initial step in managing any eye impairment is a detailed assessment of your eyes. Consult our optometrists here at 20/20 Eye Care. We make use of the most advanced technologies known in the field to treat retinal detachment. We also offer various selections of eyeglasses and contact lenses in Middle Village.
If you have other questions about retinal detachment or other eye problems, call us at (516) 419-9600 (Mineola) or (718) 514-7333 (Middle Village).