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Have normal blood pressure, noticed shadows and flashes in right eye. Should I seek medical attention?

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Ophthalmologist
Practicing since : 2003
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female, age 44, healthy, normal blood pressure, right eye: noticed "shadows" for a while, then "flashes~15 days ago, "floaters" this morning, Googling symptoms a few minutes ago; indicated retinal tear or detachment, recommended is to see ophthalmologist urgently
Question: If diagnosed correctly, must she go to emergency room now, or can she sleep and go to doctor tomorrow (Monday) morning?
Posted Sat, 2 Nov 2013 in Vision and Eye Disorders
 
 
Answered by Dr. Dadapeer K 44 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Retinal tear with risk for retinal detachment

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
Welcome to Health Care Magic

It seems from the history that you had shadows/floaters in right eye for few days, following which you had flashes since 15 days, floaters since morning. You are myopic/ near sighted as you have mentioned in the history

To develop Retinal detachment the prerequisites are liquified vitreous, retinal tear through which the liquified vitreous enters and causes retinal detachment.

Usually myopics have liquified vitreous and they have posterior vitreous detachment earlier than normal people. You probably had vitreous detachment as you were noticed shadows for a few days and you might have developed retinal tear as the symptoms of flashes suggest.

However not all with retinal tear and posterior vitreous detachment develop retinal detachment.Since you are a myopic also your profile comes in the group of high risk for development of retinal detachment.

Coming to your question, whether you require emergency treatment now or can you wait?

It depends on whether you have retinal detachment or not and as you know retinal detachment is an emergency and requires treatment at the earliest.

To know whether you have developed retinal detachment or not simple test is close normal eye and see whether you are seeing any curtain like defect or non seeing area within the visual field.

If you are seeing a curtain like defect within the visual field it indicates retinal detachment and it requires immediate treatment and you have to go for emergency treatment.

If you are not seeing any defect, probably it is not retinal detachment, only retinal tear but it requires treatment to prevent development of retinal detachment.

However since you come in the high risk category for development of retinal detachment, I advice you to consult your ophthalmologist at the earliest.

Hope I have answered your query.

Thank you
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
Follow-up: Have normal blood pressure, noticed shadows and flashes in right eye. Should I seek medical attention? 34 minutes later
Thanks, She has had "shadows" within her field of view, left corner of right eye, covering appr 1/3 of field of view. We decided that her "shadow" is what you describe as curtain-like effect, making part of the field of view darker than the rest. She describes the shadow/curtain as rather annoying and obscuring. To see she has to lean in to within 25-30cm to read a book text (normal: 45-60cm)

She will attend a doctor tomorrow rather than going down to ER immediately because she had the "shadows" for more than 15 days. They appeared together with some pain and discomort and sustained tearing. She attributed the symptoms to general tiredness resulting from much reading and day-long study/writing sessions for college course. She treated them with contact lens-compatible eye drops
 
 
Answered by Dr. Dadapeer K 35 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Retinal tear with risk of detachment

Detailed Answer:
Hello,
Welcome to Health Care Magic.
Thank you for the follow up query.

From the history you have provided it seems she has retinal tear which definitely requires treatment to prevent development of retinal detachment.
As I have advised she requires examination by a ophthalmologist or preferably by by a retina specialist to rule out presence of retinal detachment and treatment accordingly.

Hope I have answered your query.

Thank you
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
 
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