Retinal Detachment

What is the retina?

The eye is shaped like a ball. The retina is a fine sheet of nerve tissue lining the inside of the eye (see diagram below). Rays of light enter the eye and are focused onto the retina by the cornea and the lens. The retina produces a picture which is sent along the optic nerve for the brain to interpret. The eye and the brain together produce the images that we see.

What is retinal detachment?

Retinal detachments often develop in eyes with retinas weakened by a hole or tear. This allows fluid to seep underneath, weakening the attachment so that the retina becomes detached rather like wallpaper peeling off a damp wall. When detached, the retina cannot compose a clear picture from the incoming rays of light and vision becomes blurred and dim.

Who is at risk?

Retinal detachment is more frequent in middle aged, short sighted people. However, it is quite uncommon and only about one person in ten thousand is affected. It is rare in young adults.

What are the symptoms?

The most common symptom is a shadow spreading across the vision of one eye. You may also experience bright flashes of light and/or showers of dark spots called floaters. These symptoms are never painful. Many people experience flashes or floaters and these are not necessarily a cause for alarm. However, if they are severe and seem to be getting worse and you are losing vision, then you should seek medical advice. Prompt treatment can often minimise the damage to your eye.

MicroSystem Acupuncture improves vision of patients suffering from retinal detachment.