The 5 Common Retina Diseases-Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options

The purpose of the retina is to capture the light that enters the eye and then convert that light energy into an electrical signal that interprets images to reveal what you see in front of you. While it only has one job, without the retina you won’t be able to see. Damage to the retina may cause blurred vision, partial loss of vision or total loss of vision. The retina consists of layers and subsections that work together to function. Risk factors for retinal disease include age, smoking, obesity, family history, trauma to the eye and people who have diabetes. 

The 5 common retina diseases are diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, vein occlusion and retinal tear or detachment. Any disruption to the retina should be taken seriously and immediate medical intervention will be necessary to preserve vision. Symptoms of retinal disease generally include blurred vision, eye floaters, blind spots in central or peripheral vision, distortion sin vision or loss of vision. Causes vary by specific disease. Diabetic retinopathy affects 1 in 3 diabetics. High blood sugar affects the small blood vessels of the retina. As it causes damage, the blood vessels leak into the retina. Macular degeneration can also occur due to the slow leakage of blood vessels that form under the macula, but it can also be brought on due to age and the natural breakdown of a tiny part of the retina called the macula. Retinitis pigmentosa is a hereditary eye disease in which the retina’s photoreceptors start showing signs of decline affecting the rods and cones. The rods and cones are responsible for navigating low light vision, color perception and visual acuity. Vein occlusion is a blockage in the small blood vessel that carries blood away from the retina. A blood clot, disruption of blood flow or compression on the retinal vein from plaque buildup on an artery or simply due to age that has hardened the artery may cause a vein occlusion. A retinal tear or detachment may be the most recognizable terms associated with the retina, both of which results when the retina pulls away from its place at the back of the eye, most likely due to the shrinking of the vitreous in the eye due to age but is sometime caused by other eye diseases or an injury. 
Treatment options are available for most retinal diseases but not all can be cured or even reversed. Surgery can be performed to repair a retinal tear or detachment, but the other retinal diseases listed will require laser therapy, medications or vision therapies to navigate permanently altered vision. Specific treatment will depend on the severity and progression of the retinal disease. The best effort to safeguard your eyes against retinal diseases is with yearly eye exams that include retinal imaging. While the onset of symptoms can come about quickly, most disease progress with no initial symptoms and are already in the late stages by the time symptoms are present. Call Retina Consultants of Nevada at 702-369-0200 or book online at WEBSITE.