What is vitreous detachment?
The centre of the eye contains a gel-like substance called vitreous that helps the eye to maintain its round shape. As we age, the vitreous becomes more liquified and slowly shrinks, and the fibres within the vitreous start to pull away from the retina (the back inner surface of the eye that relays visual information to the brain). The vitreous separating from the retina is known as a vitreous detachment. As the vitreous shrinks and the fibres within the vitreous separate, they cast shadows on the retina that appear as floaters. Floaters may look like spots, threads or little cobwebs in your vision that float around. You may also notice flashes in your vision caused by the vitreous tugging on the retina.
Vitreous detachment is a common condition and usually occurs in people over the age of 50. Also referred to as a posterior vitreous detachment, this condition is not usually sight-threatening but in some cases can lead to a more serious eye condition. If you notice a sudden increase in floaters, any flashes or a change in your vision, contact The Eye Practice immediately for further advice or an appointment on (02) 9290 1899.
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