Retinal detachment is defined as the separation of the retina from the underlying tissue.
Retinal detachment is often preceded by a posterior vitreous detachment and the following are symptoms of posterior vitreous detachment :
Most cases of posterior vitreous detachments don’t progress to retinal detachments but when progression occurs, the following symptoms are often seen:
Examination for retinal detachment can be completed by ophthalmoscopy or fundus photography . Fundus photography generally needs to be completed with instruments larger than the ophthalmoscope but is has the distinct advantage of make the image available to be viewed by a specialist elsewhere. It also delivers photo documentation for future reference. Modern fundus photographs often reproduce much larger areas of the fundus than what can be seen at any point in time with the aid of handheld ophthalmoscopes.
There are different treatment procedures for a detached retina but each of them is dependent on finding the breaks that have formed in the retina and closing them . All three of the procedures generally follow the same principles.
The major types of treatment include the following:
The visual prognosis is difficult to predict in retinal detachment because the retina is a neuro-sensitive tissue . On average however, retinal detachment devoid of macular involvement generally has better final prognosis.
Retinal detachment has various etiologic and risk factors some of which are :
In the United States, around 6% of the general population are believed to have retinal breaks . Most of these however, are asymptomatic benign atrophic holes which are often without any accompanying pathology. This means a greater percentage of retinal leaks do not lead to retinal detachment. The annual incidence is approximately 1 in 10,000 or about 1 in 300 over a lifetime.
Worldwide, the most common etiologic factors associated with retinal detachment are aphakia, pseudophakia, myopia and trauma . Around 40%-50% of all patients with detachments have myopia, 30%-40% have had cataract correction surgeries while 10%-20% have had direct ocular trauma.
There is no gender or racial predilection for retinal detachment incidence and the condition is mostly seen in people aged 40-70 years.
The retina refers to a thin layer of light sensitive tissue often found on the back wall of the eye. The optical system of the eye focuses light on the retina just as it is seen in the camera where light is focused on the film . The retina then translates the focused image into neural impulses, before sending them to the brain through the optic nerve. Retinal detachment disintegrates the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE).
Separation of the sensory retinal from the underlying RPE happens in three different ways:
Any of the above three mechanisms can be triggered by metabolic disorders, trauma (also including previous ocular surgery), degeneration, vascular disease, choroidal tumors, high myopia, disease affecting the vitreous.
There is no clear prevention path for retinal detachment . However, permanent loss of vision can be prevented by taking note of the main signs of a detached retina which include bright flashes of light, sudden increase in floaters, a shadow or curtain that appears across the field of vision.
People older than 40 years of age who notice any of these signs, those who have a family member with a case of retinal detachment and those with extreme myopia should seek instant medical attention with any or all of these symptoms present.
Retinal detachment (RD) refers to a medical emergency of the eye where the retina is affected, peeling away from the supporting tissue beneath it . Initially, detachment may be localised or partially broad but without quick treatment, the entire retina may detach and this often leads to blindness. Permanent damage kicks in following 72 hours of inaction.
Retinal detachment is an emergency disorder where an important layer of tissue in the back of the eye known as retina pulls away from the layer of blood vessels that supply it with nourishment and oxygen.
When the detachment is complete, the retinal cells are left in need of oxygen. Leaving the retinal detachment untreated for long greatly increases your chances of permanently losing your eyesight.
Retinal detachment however has symptoms which are clear warning signs. Early diagnosis by an ophthalmologist and treatment of retinal detachment will save your vision 85% of the time. The condition is seen mostly in people aged 40 and above.