retina surgery.

What is a Retinal Detachment and do I need Retina Surgery?

The retina is the part of the eye that works like film in a camera. The retina is actually a light sensitive nerve tissue in the eye that converts images from the eye’s optical system into electrical impulses that are sent along the optic nerve to the brain.

There are two types of photoreceptors in the retina: rods and cones. Cones function best in bright light and allow us to appreciate color. Cones are contained in the macula, the portion of the retina responsible for central vision. They are most densely packed within the fovea, which is the very center portion of the macula. And while the retina contains approximately 6 million cones, there are approximately 125 million rods. They are spread throughout the peripheral retina and function best in dim lighting. The rods are responsible for peripheral and night vision. There are a number of conditions that can permanently impair vision including retinal tears and retinal detachments. Early detection is key in successfully treating retinal tears and detachments and your physician can determine the appropriate treatment.

Retinal Detachment Surgery, Treatment & Prevention

The appropriate treatment depends on the type, severity and location of the detachment. There are a number of ways to treat retinal detachment: Pneumatic retinopexy is one type of procedure to reattach the retina. After numbing the eye with a local anesthesia, the surgeon injects a small gas bubble into the vitreous cavity. The bubble presses against the retina, flattening it against the back wall of the eye. Since the gas rises, this treatment is most effective for detachments located in the upper portion of the eye.

Some types of retinal detachments, because of their location or size, are best treated with a procedure called a scleral buckle. With this technique, a tiny sponge or band made of silicone is attached to the outside of the eye, pressing inward and holding the retina in position. After removing the vitreous gel from the eye with a procedure called a vitrectomy, the surgeon usually seals a few areas of the retina into position with laser or cryotherapy. The scleral buckle is not visible and remains permanently attached to the eye.

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