"If you're very nearsighted* & over 40 (maybe
younger) you are more susceptible to Detached Retina-You have a 1 in 20
chance in your life time of a detachment versus 1 in 300 for the general
* -6.0 Diopter correction or greater
A Detached Retina is a Medical
most people know about heart attack and a
stroke symptoms, but few know about detached retina symptoms and the urgent need to get
Open Letter to Eye care professionals
Detached Retina Symptoms
Flashes of light, increase in Floaters, or a Dark Curtain across your field of vision.
Other symptoms very widely and include -
holes in visual field, peripheral vision loss, wavy lines, and sometimes
no symptoms. See an eye M.D. if you sense something strange or unusual
going on with your vision.
You Need to Act
If you have any of the above
go see an eye M.D. ASAP! Call them at night, weekends or holidays. If
the Retina is detached it should be reattached within 24 hrs for best outcome. Do not
wait! Too many people wait. You won't die from inaction but you may lose sight in the
affected eye. If you don't
have an eye MD click here to
Find a Eye
Specialist in the U.K. - link to SpecialistInfo.com (U.K. medical
Link to "Find an Eye M.D."
Utility on AAO Web Site AAO is American Academy of Ophthalmology
Institute Detached Retina Resource Guide
started this web site in 1999 to reach
"At Risk" people with information that was not given to me in 45 years
of going to a dozen Optometrists and Ophthalmologists . I am not an eye care professional. Since
October 1999 100,000's of
people have visited this site. 100's have sent me direct emails asking for help and many
say the message here saved their eyesight. This is the number one detached retina website
on the web and our companion newsgroup at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/detached-retina
has over 2100 members (Winter 2012) and is
the number one vision related newsgroup with over 37,000 messages
"Hal at sightwise.org"
Detached Retina Story
August 31, 1999, while doing computer work at 1:30 in the afternoon, a
"Dark Cloud" began to move across my field of vision and I could not see
out of my right eye (my best eye) after a few seconds. I was in the
Ophthalmologist office closest to home by 3:30, with a Retinal Surgeon
by 10:00 am the next day and out of eye surgery by 1:00 in the afternoon
the third day. Three days that changed my life. I have recovered now but
a lot has changed. No more running 3 to 4 miles three times a week, no
more weight lifting, no more roller coasters. In 45 years of
going to eye care specialists nobody warned me about the risk.
I was pretty nearsighted with well over a 6 Diopter correction. If you
are nearsighted you know what this means. My sister, who is also very
nearsighted, also had never been warned about the risk. On January 1,
2001 the same thing happened to her! We were able to get her to a
in 6 hours on a Holiday.
What would I have done
differently if someone had told me about the risk of detached retina?
1. Annual Eye Exam
with Eye MD.
2. Asked Eye MD about
Vitreous and if it has already detached or not.
3. Only ride in cars with reduced force airbags
4. Watched for increase in floaters or flashes
Click here for other detached retina personal reports
What are your chances?
Gregory Luke Larkin, MD, MS, MSPH, FACEP,
Professor of Surgery, Associate Director of Emergency Medicine, Department
of Surgery, Section of Emergency Medicine, Yale University School of
chance of a detached retina in any given year for the general population
in the U.S. is 1 chance in 15,000. Some sources indicate chances are 1
in 10,000. That's 25,000 people with a detached retina in the U.S. each
5% of very
nearsighted people (over 6 Diopter correction) will experience a retinal
detachment in their lifetime.
40 to 50 % of retinal detachment patients are nearsighted/shortsighted
Click here to see this reference paper
risk of detached retina increases:
1.If you are very
2. As you grow older.
3. If you are physically very active (including extra strenuous work e.g.
4. If you already had a Detached Retina in one eye (I am at high risk).
Click here for more on the surgical procedures I
had and you might have to have
Click here for a site visitor's account of a retinal
tear repair (a tear can precede a detachment)
Many site visitors have asked about a news group about detached retina. I
have set one up and there is no other. Join and post a message
Click here to go to detached-retina
Many Detached Retina patients report they did not know about
the symptoms-help get the word out!