Vitreous floaters / myodesopsia

March 2017


Definition


Vitreous floaters are responsible for visual disorders. "Floaters", or myodesopsia, are visual sensations perceived by the patient. They may take the form of filaments, or spots that appear to the eye, more easily identifiable upon a light background such as a white ceiling. These are actually translucent cell residues, abnormally present in the vitreous, the gelatinous and transparent substance that fills the bulb of the eye between the lens and retina. They are symptoms that may be present in patients with impaired visual refraction, including hyperopia. They typically appear at the end of the day, or may appear more brutally after a vitreous detachment or a retinal detachment or hemorrhage in vitreous.

Symptoms

  • Floaters appear to move along with eye movements.
  • They can be seen in the form of:
    • fibers;
    • floaters;
    • cobwebs.

Diagnosis


The description of the clinical signs alone will enable the doctor to identify the troublesome symptoms as being myodesopsia. This symptom is subjective, and in the case of a sudden onset, a consultation with an ophthalmologist is required. An eye ultrasound may be done to find the cause.

Treatment


There is no effective treatment for eliminating floating body vision outside the processing of the case when identified. Floaters do not disappear by themselves, but in the most common cases, the patient will gradually be accustomed to them and will cease to notice them after a few months. In case of retinal detachment, surgery is carried out whereas in the case of retinal tear, a treatment using a laser is possible. Hyperopia must be quantified, and the wearing of corrective lenses improves symptoms.

Prevention


The appearance of floaters cannot be avoided. Generally, they result from the natural evolution of the vitreous and thus cannot be prevented.

Related

Original article published by . Translated by Jeff.
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