What are those irritating spots in my eyes and will they ever go away? Sound familiar? The answer is: YES, you may be able to eliminate them.
Floaters are a common nuisance for most adults and are due to our aging process. At a young age, the vitreous (the gel-like substance in the eye) is transparent, but as one ages, imperfections gradually develop. The common type of floater, which is present in most persons’ eyes, is due to degenerative changes of the vitreous humor. Most often it is due to the separation of the vitreous gel from the back of the eye (the retina).
Floaters are visible because of the shadows they cast on the retina or refraction of the light that passes through them, and can appear as just one spot or together with several others that will cover more space. They may appear as spots, threads, or fragments of cobwebs, which float slowly before the eyes.
Whenever floaters appear, it is necessary to have an ophthalmic examination to determine the cause. If the symptoms are caused by degenerative changes, you may be eligible for treatment with LFT (Laser Floater Treatment) with a YAG laser. LFT is performed in the office, filed with insurance, and typically takes 20-60 minutes. You may need 1-3 treatments to totally achieve the necessary results.
The laser uses pulses of light to evaporate the vitreous floaters and to sever the vitreous strands. The floaters’ molecules are converted into gas bubbles which quickly dissolve and are reabsorbed into the vitreous.
- If you develop floaters, be seen by your eye care provider to make sure there is no underlying medical concern.
- If floaters appear suddenly and are numerous (can be accompanied by flashes of light), it is important to consult an eye care provider immediately as this could be an indication of a retinal problem such as a tear or detachment, or bleeding.
- If the floaters are caused by degenerative vitreous changes, then LFT may be the choice for you.
Happy New Year from Summit Eye Care and the staff. We are excited to see what 2019 brings and look forward to assisting with your eye care needs in the New Year. If you do not have an eye care provider, call Summit Eye Care for that very important examination to be sure you maintain one of God’s greatest gifts – the gift of sight!