Retinal Tear: Symptoms, Causes & Treatments

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Retinal holes or tears are weak areas in the retina that may lead to retinal detachment, which can cause severe visual impairment. In most cases, retinal holes or tears are incidentally found in patients during a detailed fundus examination by an eye specialist. Most patients don’t have any visual symptoms of these holes or tears, but early treatment can save the eye from potentially blinding retinal detachment.

Healthy Eye v/s Retinal Tear

Diagnostic test

A retinal tear is a serious medical condition that requires prompt diagnosis and treatment. The best doctor for retinal tears is an ophthalmologist with specialized training and expertise in diagnosing and treating diseases and conditions affecting the retina and vitreous.

The following are some of the diagnostic tests that may be used to diagnose a retinal tear:

Dilated Eye Exam: During a dilated eye exam, your eye doctor will use special eye drops to widen your pupils, allowing more light to enter your eye. This makes it easier for your doctor to examine the retina and other structures at the back of your eye. By using a special lens and a bright light, your doctor can carefully examine your retina for any signs of damage, such as a tear.

If you suspect you have a retinal tear or are experiencing any symptoms, such as the sudden onset of flashes or floaters, loss of vision, or a shadow in your peripheral vision, seek medical attention immediately.

Treating the retinal holes

The treatment of retinal tearing depends on various factors, including the length of the torn portion of the retina. A doctor may suggest any retinal tear surgery below based on the complexities involved.

  • Barrage Laser, also known as Photocoagulation, is a procedure that uses a laser to focus on the affected area of the retina, producing minor burns that seal off the torn retina to the surface. It can also be used to strengthen the retina around a hole or tear in the retina.
  • Scleral Buckle Surgery: In this procedure, a small piece of silicone or plastic is placed on the outer surface of the eye to push the wall of the eye against the retina, closing the tear.
  • Vitrectomy: This involves the removal of the vitreous gel inside the eye, which may be causing traction on the retina and leading to the tear. The vitreous is replaced with a saline solution.

What Experts Say?

Anshul Goyal

Dr. Anshul Goyal

Retina Surgeon (CEO)

“Early diagnosis and treatment of retinal holes and tears can save your vision from progressing to retinal detachment which is a sight threatening complication.”

Some of the common causes of a retinal tear include

  • Severe nearsightedness: People with severe nearsightedness have longer eyeballs, which can make the retina thinner and more susceptible to tearing.
  • Age-related changes: As we age, the vitreous gel in the eye shrinks and pulls away from the retina, which can cause the retina to tear.
  • Eye trauma: A sudden impact or injury to the eye can cause the retina to tear.
  • Previous eye surgery: Previous eye surgery, such as cataract surgery, can increase the risk of developing a retinal tear.
  • Eye diseases: Certain eye diseases, such as lattice degeneration, can weaken the retina and make it more susceptible to tearing.

Retinal Tear and Its Complications

A retinal tear is a serious eye condition that can cause several complications, potentially leading to permanent vision loss.

Retinal Detachment

One of the most significant complications of a retinal tear is retinal detachment. When the retina detaches, it pulls away from the back of the eye, disrupting its normal functioning and causing significant vision loss.

Vitreous Haemorrhage

A retinal tear can also cause bleeding into the vitreous gel that fills the eye, leading to vitreous haemorrhage. This can cause blurry vision or even complete vision loss. Our eye care has state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment and experienced ophthalmologists who can identify the condition and provide appropriate treatment.

While it's not always possible to prevent a retinal tear, there are several steps you can take to reduce your risk:

  • Regular eye exams: Regular eye exams are essential for maintaining good eye health and preventing vision loss. It is recommended that individuals of every age group get a comprehensive eye exam at least once every two years or more frequently.
  • Myopia (near-sightedness): People with myopia are at an increased risk for retinal tears. Getting a complete eye exam once a year to monitor for any signs of damage is essential.
  • Age above 50: As people age, the risk of developing retinal tears increases. Therefore, it is recommended that people above the age of 50 get a complete eye exam once a year to check for any signs of retinal damage.
  • Post cataract surgery: People who have undergone cataract surgery are at an increased risk for retinal tears. Therefore, getting a complete eye exam once a year is critical to monitor for any signs of damage, especially in the peripheral retina.

Maintaining good eye health and seeking prompt medical attention for eye problems can help prevent retinal tears and other serious eye conditions.

At Goyal Eye, we have some of the best eye specialists & surgeons

Our specialists

Meet our Team

Dr. Anshul Goyal CEO Cataract and Retina Surgeon

Dr. Ritin Goyal Director Cataract and Cornea Surgeon

Dr. Pawan Goyal Chairman Cataract and LASIK Surgeon

Goyal Eye Institute began with a humble beginning in 1989, and has now progressed to provide personalized and inclusive care for entre range of Ophthalmic specialties.

The Centre has highly competent and experienced Ophthalmic Super Specialists to provide best quality care under one roof. Our Specialists form various clinics work closely as a team to provide comprehensive.