A man with glasses reading a book

The retina is the light-sensitive tissue that lines the back of the eye. The retina is made up of millions of photoreceptors, which are responsible for taking in light that comes in through the cornea and interpreting it into signals for the brain. These brain signals then travel through the optic nerve and to the brain, and that’s how you see! The retina is an extremely important part of your vision. It is also very difficult to regain vision lost to retinal disease.

Retina disorders can affect the way that you process visual information and lead to distorted or absent vision. Tyson Eye realizes how much one relies on their vision. Using the very latest methods, our physicians can diagnose and treat many vision threatening retinal disorders.

Understanding the Retina

The retina is the nerve layer that lines the back of your eye. The retina’s function is to sense light and create impulses that are sent through the optic nerve and to the brain. Over the course of an individual’s lifetime, the vitreous inside of the eye shrinks. As it continues to shrink, a portion of retinal tissue may stay attached to the vitreous, leading to a retinal tear. If a tear forms in the retina, you may notice slight changes in your vision such as flashes or floaters. This condition requires routine check-ups with your eye-care professional. If left untreated, retinal tears can lead to severe damage to your vision.

A scan of the retina

A retinal detachment occurs when the retina’s layers separate. Any portion of the retina that is detached cannot send visual signals to the brain. If left untreated, retinal detachment can cause devastating damage to an individual’s vision. Retinal detachment is considered an ocular emergency that requires immediate medical attention.

Our Retina Specialist, Dr. Roman O. Pravak, MD, using all of his extensive training and education has put together helpful information so you can better understand the different conditions that can affect your retinas.

Common Retinal Disorders

The retina is susceptible to many different disorders, unfortunately. Common retinal conditions include:

  • Macular degeneration. This disease causes the macula, the central portion of the retina, to deteriorate. This causes loss of central vision and gets worse with age. This condition is not curable, but the progression can be reduced through dietary supplements. Other forms of this disease can be treated through laser therapy and medications.
  • Retinal vein occlusion. Retinal vein occlusion (RVO) is caused by a blockage in a vein located on the retina. Blockage of a vein can result in fluid leaking into the surrounding tissue. This can cause swelling and vision loss. This can be treated through a series of medications or tough laser therapy.
  • Retinal detachment. Retinal detachment occurs when the patch of retinal tissue on the back of the eye comes unattached from the wall of the eye. Symptoms include a sudden increase in floaters and flashes in vision, as well as a dark shadow in peripheral vision. This is a medical emergency and should be treated immediately.
  • Diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy affects diabetic patients with uncontrolled blood sugar levels. High blood glucose can damage the retinal blood vessels and cause leakage of blood and fluid. This condition worsens over time without management and can lead to significant vision loss. This disease can be managed with lifestyle changes.

If you are looking for a retinal specialist in Southwest Florida, look no further than Tyson Eye.