Retinal detachment treatment

Doctors and physicians must treat the retinal detachment as soon as possible. Which treatment is used depends on whether the retinal detachment has only just begun (early stage) or whether the retina has already detached.

If there is only a crack, it can be treated with a laser. Ophthalmologists “weld” the retina around the hole or tear back together with the lower layer. This prevents retinal detachment from occurring. Cold treatment(cryotherapy) with a cold probe can also be helpful. It seals the existing injuries to the retina.

Eye surgery for retinal detachment

If the retina has already detached, laser treatment will no longer help. Eye surgery is then necessary. There are various techniques. Which one the doctor chooses depends on the extent and cause of the retinal detachment. He or she performs the operation in the hospital either under local or general anesthesia, depending on the severity. Most operations can be performed under local anesthesia.

The most important surgical methods are

  • In most cases, the vitreous body is removed (vitrectomy) – the vitreous body can be replaced with silicone oil, a saline solution, air or gas. The retina then reattaches itself firmly to its support.
  • In some cases, an additional silicone band is sewn onto the sclera of the eye, but this is rarely necessary today.

If certain underlying diseases are the cause of the retinal detachment, these must also be adequately treated. These include infections, inflammations, eye tumors or eye diseases such as diabetic retinopathy.

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