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Dr. Stan
Dr. Stan, Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
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Experience:  Johns Hopkins Fellowship Trained, Certified and Licensed Medical Physician and Surgeon
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What could sudden appearance of black dots in a roughly circular

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What could sudden appearance of black dots in a roughly circular configuration seen in field of vision mean? I had several episodes of vomiting the last few days and am worried about detached retina. My father had this condition.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Stan replied 6 years ago.



I'm Dr. Stan, and I will be assisting with your question. Few questions.


Is this the first time you noticed the circular black spots?


Any change in your ability to see? (any vision change), Which eye? light sensitivity?


Does the black spots move with change in head position? Did you first noticed this after vomiting?


Any medical problem? Diabetes? Hypertension?


Have you had any eye surgery before like Cataract surgery?


After I receive your answer, I will evaluate and give you good information to help you. Thanks.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I have never experienced this. I noticed this several days after the vomiting. I have no underlying problems, i.e.diabetes, extreme hypertension, etc. I have slight hypertension controlled by diuretics. No prior eye surgery. The "image" I see is a series of dots and dashes in a roughly round shape, just to the right and middle of my right eye. One dot is slightly larger than the rest. It doesn't bother me other than I keep thinking it is a small fly buzzing around my head. It always stays in the same position - not floating in my eye. No limitations to vision and no light sensitivity.
Expert:  Dr. Stan replied 6 years ago.



Thank you for your reply.


It's likely that one or more of the tiny blood vessels inside your eye ruptured do the brief increase explosive intraocular pressure from vomiting. In general, it will re-absorb and clear without any intervention, but it can take weeks to months sometimes. However, other concerns such as impending retinal detachment or severe posterior vitreous detachment need to be excluded by your eye doctor with a good dilated eye exam.


If you are currently taking aspirin or other blood thinner like coumadin, dipyridamole, etc, you should stop them until you get evaluated. In addition, avoid severe valsalva or belching, such as severe coughing or vomiting. Avoid lifting heavy weights (>50LBs). It's also important that your blood pressure stay controlled at this time. So, please plan to see your eye doctor within the next few days for a dilated eye exam. However, if you notice worsening of vision, pain or more black spots, flashes or floaters, then please go to the nearest ER and request evaluation by on-call eye doctor. I trust that you will do well.


I hope this information is help. If you agree, please click the ACCEPT button. Thank you so much.


A Positive Feedback, and/or Bonus is welcomed.


Please note that this answer is for information only. It cannot be substituted for the visit to or the recommendation of your doctor.


Edited by Dr. Stan on 11/7/2009 at 7:23 PM EST
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