What is a Retinal Tear or Torn Retina? 

A torn retina is a serious eye problem that can happen when the retina has a tiny tear or hole that actually tears further, like a rip in a piece of cloth.  If not treated right away, a torn retina can lead to an even more serious problem called a detached retina where the retina is lifted away from the back of the eye and puts you at considerable risk of vision loss. 

How Does a Torn Retina Happen? 

When you are young the vitreous gel in your eyes is pretty firm. As we get older, the vitreous gel in your eyes starts to shrink and get thinner. Normally, the vitreous moves around on the retina without causing problems. But, IF the vitreous sticks to the retina it can pull hard enough to actually tear it. When that happens, fluid can pass through the tear and lift it or detach the retina. 

What Will I See if the Retina Tears? 

When the retina tears, you may suddenly see flashes of light or floaters. Sometimes blood can leak into the vitreous. This is called a vitreous hemorrhage, and it can cause a large number of floaters to appear suddenly. With any sudden onset of flashes of light or floaters you need to be examined right away as a torn retina can quickly cause a retinal detachment and you could lose vision. 

If you or someone you know experiences sudden flashes of light or floaters please call our office and tell us that you need an immediate appointment at please call and schedule an eye exam at Schefkind Eye Care-703-997-9710, visit Schefkind Eye Care or Facebook   

Schefkind Eye Care is a comprehensive ophthalmology practice staffed by ophthalmologist eye doctors serving the Mt. Vernon & Alexandria, VA communities. 

Previous Posts