Retinal Detachment Treatment Hawaii

A retinal detachment occurs when the retina is pulled away from its normal position, lining the inside wall of the eye. The area of retina that is detached does not see light very well and the vision is blurred or lost. If left untreated, a retinal detachment may progress quickly and lead to complete loss of vision of the eye.

Early symptoms of a retinal detachment may include flashing lights, new floaters, or a gray curtain which moves across your field of vision. These symptoms do not always mean a retinal detachment is present, however, you should see your eye doctor as soon as possible if you experience them. Some retinal detachments progress so quickly that the first symptom a patient notices is loss of vision of the eye.

As the vitreous pulls away from the retina during a posterior vitreous detachment, the retina may at times tear. Retinal detachment occurs if fluid from within the vitreous passes through the tear and collects under the retina, causing the retina the separate from the underlying tissue. An analogy would be a hole that has developed in a room’s wallpaper. The hole in the wallpaper usually needs to be repaired before it gets larger and leads to the wallpaper bubbling off the wall. The detached retina is not capable of normal sight and as the retinal detachment enlarges and approaches the central part of the retina there will be an enlarging area of vision loss. This is sometimes described as a shadow or veil covering the vision. Sometimes retinal tears occur without associated floaters or flashing lights. In these cases, the first symptoms to occur may be the loss of vision due to retinal detachment.

There are many different techniques to repair a retinal detachment. The amount of vision recovered after successful retinal detachment surgery is variable. The most important factors influencing the postoperative vision are whether the macula is detached prior to surgery and the duration the detachment has been present. If retinal detachment surgery can be done before the detachment has extended to the macula (the center portion of the retina which is responsible for central vision) the likelihood of maintaining good central vision is excellent. In many cases however a retinal detachment may not be detected until after the central vision is affected. If the macula is detached prior to the surgical repair, there is usually some permanent vision loss even after successful retinal detachment surgery. While it is common to obtain some improvement in vision shortly after surgery, the final best vision may at times take 6 months, a year, or even longer to obtain.