Retinal Tears and Detachments

Retinal tears and detachments are conditions where the inner lining of the eye (the retina) is damaged. A retinal tear describes a small break in this lining, whereas a retinal detachment describes a much larger separation of the retina from the back wall of the eye. The retina needs to be intact and attached for the eye to see. Aging, eye trauma, eye surgery, and high levels of nearsightedness (myopia) may cause increased risk for retinal tears or detachments.

Symptoms of retinal tear or detachment may include a sudden increase in flashes or floaters in the vision, or the development of a new area of shaded or dark vision in an eye. It is very important to have a prompt evaluation when these symptoms occur, as permanent loss of eyesight may occur if a retinal problem is not treated in a timely manner.