The middle of your eye is filled with a gel-like substance called the vitreous. It is a clear gel that is typically attached to your retina or the back lining of your eye. As we age, the vitreous becomes more fluid and shrinks, causing it to detach and pull away from your retina. Most of us will have a posterior vitreous detachment by age 70; it is a normal physiologic change.
Risk factors that could cause a posterior vitreous detachment include:
– Cataract or other eye surgery
Symptoms: What Do Floaters Mean?
Some may not have any symptoms of a posterior vitreous detachment. Typically, you may notice new flashing lights, new floaters or tiny specks in your vision that move when you move your eye. These floaters do not cause harm to your vision and, over time, may become less noticeable.
In rare cases, as the vitreous detaches from the retina, it can cause a retinal tear or hole. The symptoms are similar to a vitreous detachment. If you do have new flashing lights, floaters or a curtain blocking part of your vision, it is recommended to see your eye doctor as soon as possible
For most, a posterior vitreous detachment is a benign process. There is no associated vision loss and the most frequent symptom is a persistent floater. Floaters can be bothersome but should improve with time. No treatment is needed.
In rare cases, posterior vitreous detachment can cause a retinal tear or hole, which may need to be treated. Typically this involves an office laser procedure.
The vitreous is a gel-like substance filling the back of your eye. If you have blood vessel damage from diabetic retinopathy, a retinal vein occlusion, a retinal tear or retinal detachment, this could cause bleeding that fills the vitreous space. The bleeding is painless but causes a decrease in your vision. You may notice sudden cloudiness in your vision, new flashes or new dark floaters. If you have these symptoms, it is important to contact Northeast Ohio Eye Surgeons for an eye exam as soon as possible. The treatment depends on the cause of the bleeding and can range from observation (until the blood clears), to injections or surgical therapy.