Who would ever think that the eye can have its own form of stroke? This can be caused by an occlusion or a blockage in one of the eye’s tiny arteries and blood vessels. It can happen on the retina, a part of the eye that is responsible for sensing light. That’s when a “heart attack” of the eye happens — and it can cause major damages!
What causes the blockage?
An occlusion in the eye’s arteries is caused by a blood clot that has stuck in these blood vessels. The eye can be much more prone to this when the arteries have hardened, a condition known as atherosclerosis of the eye. Furthermore, some people are more likely to experience an eye stroke, including those with the following medical conditions:
- Heart problems, particularly affecting the heart’s valves or rhythm
- Carotid artery disease
- Hypertension or high blood pressure
- Hyperlipidemia, or the presence of high levels of fat in the bloodstream
- Drug abuse, especially when done intravenously
- Temporal arteritis, arterial damage due to a response by the immune system
What are the signs of artery occlusion in the eye?
When an artery in the eye is occluded, the retina, as well as the rest of the eye, may not be able to receive enough blood and oxygen that it needs to support proper functioning. As a result, a sudden blurring of vision may occur, either in a part of the eye or in all of it. In more serious cases, the occlusion may even lead to a loss of vision entirely.
If you suspect such medical emergency, have your eyes checked right away. Call us at 1-808-487-8928 to book an appointment with one of our eye experts here at Retina Consultants of Hawaii.