An Explanation of the Retinal Tear

A retinal tear can turn into a very serious eye problem if not treated quickly. Eventually, a tear can lead to a complete detachment which will cause the patient to lose eye sight in the affected eye. In some cases, it may be possible to repair the problem and restore vision. The key is identifying the symptoms fast and taking steps to seek medical assistance as soon as possible. The first step is knowing what the problem is and how to know when it happens.

What is a Retinal Tear?

A retinal tear is a hole or gap that forms in the retina. The retina is a layer of tissue that is found at the back of the eye. This tissue is light sensitive and can process images taken in through the eye. Once the image appears on the retina, which acts somewhat like a built in movie screen, it is carried off to the brain. The process happens quickly and works very well, until a problem forms in the retina.

When a tear happens, which can occur from an injury or eye swelling, it can allow a gel like fluid to leak in. The retina may eventually detach from the inside of the eye. With no light sensitive retina present to project images to the brain, the individual will notice a loss of eye sight.

Treating a Retinal Tear

Only a medical professional can treat a retinal tear. This generally requires one of a few different surgical procedures. Some surgeons will use a gas bubble to allow a seal to form over the opening and close up the tear. The closure will stop the flow of fluid and allow the detached retina to reattach, restoring eye sight. In other cases, the retinal tear may be closed by freezing (also called cryopexy), or using heat from a laser. The laser creates tiny scars around he opening which essentially scores it so that it can begin to heal closed.

A retinal tear should be treated by a doctor; however it is up to the patient to seek out medical help as soon as the symptoms appear. A sudden loss of vision, even partial, as well as a strange ring or floaters obstructing vision should be checked out right away. These could be signs that a retinal tear or complete detachment has happened and must be treated.

3 Types of Retinal Detachment Surgery

All retinal detachment surgery is not exactly the same. Depending on the individual situation, a patient may have to undergo one of a few different procedures. If you are not sure about which retinal detachment surgery you are having performed, talk to your surgeon. They can give you a better perspective on what to expect and what your individual case requires.

Pneumatic Retinopexy

Pneumatic retinopexy is a retinal detachment surgery that is generally performed right in the doctor’s office. Local anesthesia is used so the patient remains comfortable. This procedure can repair the retina using a gas bubble, which is placed in the eye. The existing hole is treated by freezing or with a laser. When undergoing this type of retinal detachment surgery, the patient must keep their head in a certain position so the gas bubble remains against the hold in the retina. This may be necessary for several days until the hole is sealed.

Scleral Buckle Surgery

A second retinal detachment surgery is Scleral buckle surgery. This is performed by sewing one or more silicone bands to the sclera, or white outer area of the eye. These bands will push the eye wall out so that it presses against the hold in the retina. This will close the gap and reduce the flow of fluid through the hole. Eventually, the retina will be able to reattach. Patients who undergo this type of retinal detachment surgery will become more nearsighted.

Vitrectomy

A third type of retinal detachment surgery is the Vitrectomy.  This is the act of actually removing the vitreous gel from the eye. It is replaced with either a silicone oil or a gas bubble. In some cases, the gas bubble is preferred because it will be absorbed on its own within weeks and will not cause a change in eye sight. The silicone gel, on the other hand, must be removed after two to eight months, depending on the surgeon’s advice. Although Vitrectomy is a common procedure, it can also increase the progression of cataracts in the affected eye.

A Closer Look at Detached Retina Surgery

Many people undergo detached retina surgery. In most cases, this is a sudden event and not something the individual has necessarily planned. A detached retina can happen at any time and it is an emergency situation that requires immediate attention. A patient that notices the symptoms of a detached retina, such as partial blindness, a ring of hair or “floaters,” or increased number of “floaters” in the eye should seek help right away.

Before Detached Retina Surgery Begins

When arriving at the hospital, the patient is usually given eye drops and a hospital gown to change into. The surrounding facial area is generally sterilized and covered. It is important to note that there are a few different types of detached retina surgery. The preparation requirements may vary for each procedure, sot he patient should check with the surgeon to find out what will happen and what they need to do. Some procedures require the patient to fast before hand as well. Most also require local anesthesia.

During the Procedure

Detached retina surgery is a broad term that includes a few different procedures. What goes on during the procedure will depend on which is being performed. Your surgeon can tell you more about what will happen during your surgery and what to expect. Naturally, the procedures will generally require anesthesia so you feel little to no discomfort.

After Detached Retina Surgery

Healing from detached retina surgery takes time Just like other surgical procedures, your body must recover. Patients should learn about the healing process for their specific surgery and not expect to see perfectly as soon as they leave the hospital or doctor’s office. Some procedures, such as Pneumatic Retinopexy, may require the head stays in a certain position for a few days. Others will require the use of eye drops. Most will advise the patient to come back for a follow up visit as soon as one day after the procedure to make sure the eye is healing properly.

The best way to find out more about detached retina surgery is to ask your doctor. There are also many resources available online that can share details about each specific surgery and what you can expect from it.

How Effective is a Retinal Scanner?

The retinal scanner is an interesting technology that can help medical practitioners identify problems more quickly and offer better treatment. What is a retinal scanner? This device scans patterns found in a person’s retina.  For the most part, the retina remains the same from the day we are born until the day we die. No two people share the same retinal patterns, either, making this an excellent way to identify individuals. The retinal scanner uses an infrared light to trace a path on the retina.

What Can the Retinal Scanner Do?

The retinal scanner can serve a number of purposes. The first is to identify individuals and store their information in a database. Since the retina is so unique, there is little chance for a duplicate or miss identification to happen. The retinal scanner can also serve a more medical purpose. The retina changes little as we develop, but certain conditions can alter it. Diabetes, glaucoma, and retinal degenerative conditions have been known to change the way the retina looks. The retinal scanner can help identify these problems accurately and quickly.

The medical applications do not stop there. A retinal scanner can also help determine whether or not a woman is pregnant. It can also provide a sign of many communicable diseases such as syphilis, Lyme disease, malaria and AIDs. Many hereditary conditions are also on the list. A retinal scanner can reveal a chronic health problem such as high cholesterol or congestive heart failure.

Why Do Some People Dislike the Retinal Scanner?

Not everyone likes the retinal scanner. Some feel it is too intrusive, especially for less serious applications. The person being scanned must be very close to the equipment, which is very costly to purchase. The high price of the retinal scanner and it’s generally user un-friendly operation are bad enough for some, others also argue that it is not accurate in some cases. Patients with cataracts and other diseases as well as severe astigmatism may find their retinal scanner results are altered because of these conditions.

The Symptoms and Treatment of a Retinal Vein Occlusion

Retinal vein occlusion is a common condition that many people suffer from each year. Most have no idea what it is until they begin to see the symptoms that accompany it. The eye is cleansed and fed using a series of small blood vessels. In a healthy eye, these allow for a constant flow of blood.  Age and other factors can cause these vessels to develop blockages over time. When they become blocked, which is also called “occluded”. The blood forms a clot and cannot pass through.

Symptoms of Retinal Vein Occlusion

The symptoms of retinal vein occlusion can vary from one patient to another. The way the problem appears depends heavily on which blood vessel is blocked.  When an artery is blocked, the affected eye will experience blindness. This happens as the retina stops functioning. Some patients experience complete blindness while others only partial blindness. If the blocked vessel is a vein, then vision may become blurry or cloudy due to a rupture. The patient will notice this rather quickly because the problem will develop over a period of a few hours.

How to Treat Retinal Vein Occlusion

When a patient notices the symptoms of retinal vein occlusion, it is vital that they take action immediately. Rather than wait for a doctor’s appointment, the patient should head to the emergency room. This is primarily in cases involving a retinal artery blockage. In a short time, the lack of blood supply will cause parts of the eye to die off permanently.

A vein blockage is not as serious, but should be evaluated by a medical professional. A younger patient may find the blood is absorbed back into the body, with no treatment necessary. In other cases, a laser may be used to stop the blood spillage. This problem is often not noticeable until it actually happens, so regular eye examinations are highly recommended. A medical professional can detect the problem and offer treatment before it becomes serious.

Artificial Retina: A Modern Breakthrough That Could Save Your Sight

The artificial retina is one of the newest, most exciting breakthroughs in the world of modern eye medicine. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has been assigned with the task of developing this amazing prosthesis. Just how amazing is the artificial retina? Thanks to advanced technology and medicine, this eye implant will be capable of allowing blind people to read and recognize faces. They will also make it possible for blind individuals to regain their ability to move around using sight.

Who Can Use the Artificial Retina?

The artificial retina is intended for those who have lost their sight due to retinitis pigmentosa as well as age related macular degeneration.  The beginning of this journey had positive results, with six patients undergoing successful implants. The second generation artificial retina improved the results. The third generation is planned to be the most remarkable.

How Does the Artificial Retina Work?

The artificial retina is implanted into the eye. It adds an electrode array to the top of the damaged retina. This array will stimulate the undamaged nerves that are found just underneath. The image is actually transmitted through a wireless connection to a small video camera mounted on a pair of glasses. Each new generation has increased the number of electrodes, from 16 in the first generation to 60 in the second. The third is planned to use over 200 electrodes, which improves the device’s ability to transmit an image. Although it may not be a perfect solution, it is an enormous improvement for anyone who has completely lost their sight.

Detached Retina Causes: Identifying the 3 Types and Why They Appear

There are a few different detached retina causes, each forming one of three types. Regardless of what is causing the problem, a detached retina is very serious and should be treated with urgency. Patients that suspect they are experiencing symptoms of a detached retina should seek out professional medical assistance as soon as possible. Each type can lead to blindness and further damage of the retina if not properly and promptly cared for.

The Rhegmatogenous Retinal Detachment

Detached retina causes that fall under the Rhegmatogenous category happen when there is a break in the retina. This break allows fluid, called the vitreous, to pass through the newly formed opening. There are three different types of potential breaks a retina can suffer from: a tear, a hole, and a dialyses.

Tractional Retinal Detachment

The detached retina causes that come with a tractional case are usually identified as an injury or inflammation.  When this type of trauma happens, the retina can be pulled. The stress leads to a detached retina, tear, or both.

Exudative Retinal Detachment

Exudative retinal detachment is also called secondary or serous. This type happens when fluid accumulates under the retina with no hole to escape through. Detached retina causes in this case are similar to the tractional category, brought on by an injury or inflammation. Vascular abnormalities can also bring on exudative retinal detachment.

Treatment of Detached Retinas

After learning detached retina causes and how they differ, it is easy to understand why each may require a different procedure to correct. The patient should obtain medical advice from an eye doctor or, in case one is not available, from the emergency room physician. Quick reaction time is vital to a solid recovery, so the problem should not be ignored until office hours are available. The patient is at risk of completely losing their eye sight, so time is of the essence.

Detached Retina Symptoms: Identifying the Problem Can Save Your Eyesight

If you notice detached retina symptoms, it is vital that you seek medical attention as soon as possible. A detached retina can lead to serious eye sight loss as well as blindness. There are symptoms that can appear before the actual detachment as well as other symptoms that indicate the condition has already formed.

Symptoms that Appear Before Retina Detachment

Many retinal detachments are preceded by what is called a posterior vitreous detachment. When we are born, the vitreous humor is attached to the retina. As our bodies grow and develop, it shrinks and forms pockets of liquid. If the vitreous humor detaches completely, the patient will notice flashes of light in the peripheral vision. This may be accompanied by a ring of floaters or hair in the field of vision as well as a significant increase in the number of “floaters” the patient sees. Not all posterior vitreous detachments lead to a detached retina.

Detached Retina Symptoms

Detached retina symptoms often start after a posterior vitreous detachment. Common symptoms include a thick shadow that stretches from the peripheral vision into the center. This, along with central loss of vision, can be very unsettling. The patient may also feel as though a curtain had been dropped over everything they see. Lines that once appeared straight may begin to bend.

Are You Experiencing Detached Retina Symptoms?

An appointment should be made with an eye doctor or visit the emergency room the moment you notice the first detached retina symptoms. It is possible that the problem could actually be something else, but either way loss of vision is a serious problem that should be examined right away. Not only does this indicate a problem, it can also hinder your ability to function independently at normal levels. Once diagnosed, a physician can determine the best course of action to heal the retina.  This is generally done by locating breaks in the retina and sealing them off to prevent further damage.

Eye Health: A Closer Look at the Retina

Most people have heard of the retina, but do they really know what this part of the eye is and what it does? The retina is a tissue that lines the inside of the eye. This tissue is light sensitive, which is vital for sight. The retina itself is made of multiple layers of neurons. The photoreceptor cells, which are commonly referred to as rods and cones, are the only neurons that are light sensitive. The rods and cones act as receptors that send information to the other neurons to process light.

How the Retina Sees

Other parts of the eye take in light, which forms an image projected on the retina. In a way, it could be viewed like a projector and a movie screen. The world projects images and the retina captures them for the eye and brain to process. The optic nerve serves as a link between the eye and the brain, so the images get to the right places.

Retina Health and Risks

Just like any other part of the body, the retina is susceptible to certain diseases and conditions. Since the retina plays an integral role in the sense of sight, a problem can hinder the patient’s ability to see and process images. Some conditions are inherited. For example, Retinitis pigmentosa develops as a result of genetics. This term refers to an entire group of diseases that impact the retina and lead to a loss of peripheral and night vision. Retinoblastoma refers to cancer that develops in the retina while macular degeneration causes central vision blindness.

Treating Retina Conditions

Retina conditions are caused by many different things. In order to treat a retina problem, the individual condition must be evaluated. If you suspect a problem with your eyes, make an appointment with a physician right away. Only a trained medical professional can accurately diagnose the problem and provide a safe treatment plan.

Your retina is a very important part of your eyes. Without the retina, the entire process of seeing would be hindered. Have problems checked out as soon as you notice a change in your eyes. You may be able to correct the problem or find a way to live with it.