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Retinal Detachment
Warning Symptoms
by Mark Pophal, M.D.

Dr. Pophal would like to remind you that without an exam many of your questions cannot be properly answered.

Your vision is important and should not be taken for granted, or taken lightly. It is wise to see an eye doctor right away if you have questions or problems with your eyes or vision.

Useful information can be found at the American Academy of Ophthalmology website

Q. What are the warning symptoms of Retinal Detachment?

A. These early symptoms may indicate the presence of a retinal detachment:

  • Flashing lights
  • New floaters
  • A gray curtain moving against your field of vision.
These symptoms do not always mean a retinal detachment is present; however, you should see your ophthalmologist as soon as possible.

Your ophthalmologist can diagnose retinal detachment during an eye examination where he or she dilates (enlarges) the pupils of your eyes. Some retinal detachments are found during routine eye examination.

Only after a careful exam can your ophthalmologist tell whether a retinal tear or early retinal detachment is present.

Q. What treatment is needed for Retinal Detachment?

A. Most retinal tears need to be treated with laser surgery or cryotherapy (freezing), which seals the retina to the back wall of the eye.

These treatments cause little or no discomfort and may be performed in your ophthalmologist's office. Treatment usually prevents retinal detachment.

In some cases, retinal tears can be observed without treatment.

Almost all patients with retinal detachments require surgery to put the retina back in its proper position.

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Dr. Mark Pophal
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