Short sightedness, trauma and family history are amongst the common risk factors.

Retinal detachment

Retinal detachment is a common cause of loss of vision. It is therefore important to recognise the early signs of retinal detachment before there are any irreversible retinal changes. Retinal detachment is more much common in people with myopia and the greater the myopia the greater the risk of developing a retinal detachment. The retina in myopic patients is thinner and weaker and can therefore more easily form a retinal tear or retinal hole through which fluid can enter underneath the retina and cause a detachment. Retinal detachment can also occur after ocular trauma.

The typical symptoms of retinal detachment are floaters, flashes of light and a darkish grey shadow across one area of the visual field, which can progress towards the centre of the vision if not treated.

If these symptoms are present an Ophthalmologist should be consulted immediately, as retinal detachment is treatable.

If the Ophthalmologist can only see a retinal tear then it may be suitable to treat that with laser treatment in the clinic. Some very small and special cases of retinal detachment can also be treated with laser in order to surround the edge of the small detached area and stop fluid from leaking further underneath the retina. However if there is a proper retinal detachment with significant fluid beneath the retina, then an operation usually inside the eye involving  Vitrectomy is needed to flatten the retina and in order to do intraocular laser of the retinal tear.