Retinal Detachment

Retinal Detachment

A retinal detachment occurs when the retina's sensory and pigment layers separate. It is a problem that occurs most frequently in the middle-aged and elderly.

Types :


Rhegmatogenous RD :

This is the most common type & occurs when there is a break in the sensory layer of the retina. It is more common in myopes & in patients who have undergone eye surgeries.


Tractional RD :

Occurs when strands of vitreous or scar tissue create traction on the retina and more likely in diabetics.


Exudative RD :

Happens when fluid collects underneath the layers of the retina, causing it to separate from the back wall of the eye. This type usually occurs in conjunction with another disease.


Signs and Symptoms
  • Light flashes /"Wavy," or "watery" vision
  • Veil or curtain obstructing vision
  • Shower of black spots, or spider webs in front of the eye
  • Sudden decrease of vision

Detection and Diagnosis

The doctor makes the diagnosis of a retinal detachment after thoroughly examining the retina with ophthalmoscopy / ultrasonography. The retinal surgeon's first concern is to determine whether the macula (the center of the retina) is attached.


Treatment options
  • Pneumatic retinopexy: The surgeon injects a small gas bubble into the vitreous cavity. The bubble presses against the retina, flattening it against the back wall of the eye.
  • Scleral buckle: With this technique, a tiny band made of silicone is attached to the outside of the eye, pressing inward and holding the retina in position.
  • Vitrectomy: In this procedure,the vitreous from the eye is removed & replaced by either gas or oil.
How successful is surgery to repair a retinal detachment?

Most of the time, surgery succeeds in reattaching the retina. Vision after surgery will depend on which part of the retina was detached and how the eye heals after surgery.


What you can do…

Notify your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following:
  • An obstruction of your peripheral vision (veil, shadow, or curtain)
  • Sudden shower of floaters
  • Light flashes
  • Spider webs

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