Earlier this year, I mentioned that I wear glasses and discussed what I've done to maintain them. What I glossed over was the quality of my vision and how stable it is. A change occurred about 5 years ago, and again recently, when I started seeing 'floaters' in my vision.
Many people see faint objects or translucent cloud-like patches that seem to move around in their line of sight. Five years ago I had a large blockage in one eye that I could move around by twitching my head or rolling my eyes. I went to my Optometrist and was diagnosed as having Posterior Vitreous Detachment, explained quite nicely here. Luckily for me, that was all it was; one of the rare symptoms that can follow PVD is damage to the retina, or even more rarely, retinal detachment.
Symptoms of PVD and retina damage include:I started to see flashes of light and an increase of floaters this week -- not good. So, with the overlap of symptoms of a serious condition that could damage my eyesight and a relatively minor annoyance, I went to see my doctor.
As a posterior vitreous detachment proceeds, adherent vitreous membrane may pull on the retina. While there are no pain fibers in the retina, vitreous traction may stimulate the retina, with resultant flashes that can look like a perfect circle.
- Flashes of light (photopsia)
- A sudden dramatic increase in the number of floaters
- A ring of floaters or hairs just to the temporal side of the central vision
If a retinal vessel is torn, the leakage of blood into the vitreous cavity is often perceived as a "shower" of floaters. Retinal vessels may tear in association with a retinal tear, or occasionally without the retina being torn.
The result was the same as the last one: no retina damage, but I have a follow-up appointment scheduled for two months from now, just to make certain there is no continuing problem. This is yet another reminder for me, and the rest of us, not to neglect what seems to be 'minor' ailments. There is just no telling what could turn out to be a serious problem.
Like this guy:
Take care of yourself, so you are then able to care for others.
- One eye exam, 100% out of pocket. (You don't want to know. Really.)
- Nothing else was purchased this week -- and not much will be for the balance of the month.
As always, if you have comments, suggestions or corrections, please post them so we all can learn. And remember, Some Is Always Better Than None!