Retina Scan

If you have been told that you have retina problems, you may need to see a retina specialist. A retina specialist is a medical eye doctor who has specialized in ophthalmology and sub-specialized in diseases and surgery of the vitreous body of the eye and the retina.

What Is the Retina?

The retina is a multi-layered sensory tissue that lines the back of the eye and connects the visual images that you see to the brain via the optic nerve. The retina has millions of photoreceptors that capture light rays and convert them into electrical impulses.

These impulses travel along the optic nerve to the brain where they are turned into images. Any type of disruption while these images are traveling to the brain results in vision loss or distorted vision.
The central part of the retina, called the “macula” is the most sensitive. If the macula is affected by disease, seeing becomes very difficult. The macula is responsible for your vision accuracy, allowing you to read or recognize a person.

• Diabetic retinopathy
• Age-related macular degeneration
• Retinal detachment
• Retinal vein and artery occlusion
• Macular hole/pucker

When left undetected, diseases of the vitreous and retina can cause permanent blindness. There are a number of retinal conditions that can impact the long-term health of your vision, but most can be treated when they are found early.

When you schedule your comprehensive eye exam with Eye Care of La Jolla, our expert ophthalmologists can alert you to any potential problems with the retina early-on, thus helping you avoid serious diseases and complications.

We recommend you schedule a comprehensive eye exam annually or biannually to keep your eyes healthy.

Diabetic Retinopathy
A complication of diabetes where blood vessels in the eye are damaged. This may be with no symptoms initially, but eventually may notice vision problems.

Retinal Detachment
A retinal detachment is a serious eye condition in which the retina detaches from the back of the eye. This may cause a patient to experience flashes of light, an increase in floaters, and a shade or curtain forming over their vision. The retina can be reattached in a variety of ways and can restore vision or preserve vision if detected early.

Macular Degeneration Treatments
(Age-related macular degeneration)

If the eye contains extra amounts of protein called vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), it can cause abnormal blood vessels to leak fluid. This fluid builds up in the eye and leads to vision changes. Lucentis injections can improve vision and reduce swelling by preventing damaged blood vessels from leaking.

Avastin also blocks the protein VEGF and can be used to treat several eye conditions. Avastin® is a drug used to treat wet, age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It is also used to treat diabetic eye disease and other retina problems. It is injected into the eye to help slow vision loss from these diseases.

Vitrectomy is the surgical removal of the vitreous gel from the eye. This may be done as part of a retinal detachment repair to give the ophthalmologist a better view, or to assist in the treatment and clearing of bleeding in the back of the eye.

Macular hole/pucker
The macula is a small area in the center of the retina where light is sharply focused to produce the detailed color vision needed for tasks such as reading and driving. When a full-thickness defect develops in the macula, the condition is referred to as macular hole. Two conditions called a macular pucker and a macular hole can cause vision to become blurred or distorted, affecting central vision.

Symptoms of macular hole or macular pucker:

• Blurring
• Distortion (straight lines appearing wavy)
• A dark spot in the central vision

The degree to which vision is affected will depend on the size and location of the macular hole, as well as the stage of its development.