Diagnose Retinal Detachment in Edmonton
If you see an increase in flashes of light or floaters in your vision, you should see an eye doctor right away. These are possible symptoms of a serious eye condition called retinal detachment, which can lead to blindness if not treated promptly. At Optometrists Clinic Inc., we can identify retinal detachment and urgently refer for treatment, so contact us today to see an eye doctor at one of our clinics in Edmonton, Leduc, and Westlock.
What Is Retinal Detachment?
Retinal detachment is a hole or tear in the thin, light-sensitive layer at the back of the eye. Nerve cells in the retina detect light entering the eye and send signals to the brain about what the eye sees. When the retina is detached, these nerves no longer work, and your brain won’t receive accurate signals.
Causes of Retinal Detachment
Retinal detachment can be caused by fluids collecting under the retina due to inflammation or disease. It can also happen when the vitreous sac shrinks, which pulls at the retina, resulting in tears or holes. A head or eye injury can also result in retinal detachment.
Symptoms of Retinal Detachment
Symptoms of retinal detachment include an increase in the number of floaters — little specks or cobwebs that float through your vision. Another symptom is flashes of light in your peripheral vision. The most urgent symptom is if you are suddenly missing part of your vision, similar to a veil or curtain obscuring part of your vision. Retinal detachment is considered a medical emergency (should be seen within 24 hours), so if you experience these symptoms, call Optometrists Clinic Inc right away. If it is during non-business hours and your symptoms are severe, you can also present to the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton, as there are ophthalmologists on call at the Eye Institute of Alberta.
Floaters and flashes of lights don’t always mean you have a retinal detachment. It could mean you have posterior vitreous detachment, a condition that is typically harmless. Consult an optometrist for a proper diagnosis.
Who Is at Risk of Retinal Detachment?
Retinal detachment can affect anyone at any age. However, most cases occur in people over 40. Risk factors for retinal detachment include:
Previous retinal detachment in the other eye
Family history of retinal detachment
Retinal Detachment Repair and Treatment
There are several retinal detachment treatment surgeries an ophthalmologist can perform. Your optometrist can urgently refer you to specific ophthalmologists who can perform these specialized procedures.
Pneumatic retinopexy. The doctor injects a gas bubble into the eyeball, which lightly presses the detached retina to the wall of the eye. The doctor will then seal or repair the tear with a laser.
Scleral buckling surgery. A silicone band is placed around the outside of the eye, which moves the eyewall closer to the retina.
Vitrectomy. The doctor removes the vitreous gel from the eye and then repairs any tears or holes. The doctor then fills your eye back up with an absorbing gas that holds the retina in place while the tears heal.
Retinal Detachment Treatment in Edmonton
At Optometrists Clinic Inc., our eye doctors can identify retinal detachment and help you stop or reverse vision loss. We provide comprehensive eye care for patients of all ages at our eye clinics in Edmonton, Westlock, and Leduc. If you see floaters and flashes of light, contact us immediately and book an appointment.