Retinal Tear

About Retinal Tears

What is a Retinal Tear?

The back of the eye is filled with clear jelly called vitreous. As the vitreous jelly ages it slowly becomes liquid. As the eyeball moves the vitreous may pull on the retina, causing you to see flashing lights. Normally the jelly is only loosely “attached” to the retina and easily peels away; this event is called a posterior vitreous detachment (PVD). This normal event occurs commonly between 50 and 70 years of age. However, occasionally, the vitreous jelly is so “attached” to the retina, and pulls so hard on it, that it creates a tear.

Unusual visual distortions such as flashes of light, an abundance of dark floating spots (floaters) in your visual field, or a grey area in your visual field are the more common symptoms of a retinal tear. These are especially concerning if they show up, or increase suddenly, or if they happen following an injury or blow to the eye or head. If these occur, you should see an eye doctor immediately. Our retina specialists at Eye Health MD Clinic can treat a torn retina by sealing it with laser treatment.