Retinal detachment

Retinal detachment is a tearing or separation of the retina (the light-sensitive lining at the back of the eye) from the underlying tissue, possibly resulting in vision loss.
Retinal Detachment Illustration

Causes & risk factors

  • A high degree of nearsightedness.
  • After cataract surgery.
  • Ocular Trauma.
  • Loss of jelly-like substance (vitreous) eye.
  • Retinal breaks.
  • Lattice retinal degeneration.
  • Glaucoma.
  • Personal or family history of retinal detachment.


  • Flashes of light (photopsia) or sudden increase of photopsia.
  • Shadow of a curtain moving across vision and loss of central vision.
  • Increase of floaters or spots.


  • Loss of vision.
  • Sudden or recent onset of floaters.
  • Flashing lights.
  • Loss of peripheral field.
  • Family history of vision loss or history of retinal disease.
  • History of trauma, vitreous or retinal disease or intraocular surgery.


Possible treatment options can include:

  • Laser photocoagulation.
  • Replacing vitreous (jelly-like substance)—Vitrectomy.
  • Cryotherapy.
  • Scleral buckle.
  • Expanding gas.
  • Air injection.
  • Silicone oil injection.


Early detection and treatment of signs and symptoms through routine comprehensive eye exams by a doctor of optometry.

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