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Dr. Stan
Dr. Stan, Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 2690
Experience:  Johns Hopkins Fellowship Trained, Certified and Licensed Medical Physician and Surgeon
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I have a small visual arc of light which flashes temporarily

Resolved Question:

I have a small visual arc of light which flashes temporarily near centre of vision in right eye. It is stimulated by movement of the eye and disappears almost immediately, but appears again in same place with next eye movement. It is more visible when looking at a bright area eg a wall, whiteboard, sky. It is almost invisible against a detailed background and in artificial light in evening. I have had this for 6 weeks and it has not changed in intensity or position. I have had a full examination by an optician using pupil dilation and he found my retinas to be healthy and no need to refer me on for further tests. He was not able to say what the flashing was caused by. I find it distracting and am rather concerned. It is not a floater since I have had those for years. I'd be glad for advice/reassurance then I can begin to ignore this symptom. Thanks. PS The area where the flash occurs has no loss of vision. I had an occular migraine a few days before the flash arc effect began. But I have had occular migraine occasionally over the years and that effect is in both eyes, not one eye.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Stan replied 4 years ago.
Hello,

Welcome to Just Answer:

It is likely that you are experiencing the flash sensation of pocket of melted clear gel (vitreous) inside the eye. This is likely due to central vision formation of a pocket of melted vitreous or posterior vitreous detachment. This is not harmful, and tend to occur with increasing age, especially in persons with history of old floaters. However, it can represent a new symptom associated with the ocular migraine. I suggest that you consider a routine follow-up visit with an ophthalmologist who is better equipped and trained to completely examine the back of your eye to exclude any problem with the retina and confirm the you have PVD, which only needs routine observation.

It was a pleasure to assist you. Please, allow me get credit for my time and effort in assisting you and press the ACCEPT button for this assist. I will be glad to answer additional questions until you are satisfied. Thank you so much.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thanks a lot for the prompt advice which I have found reassuring.
I would like a little clarification. You have used the word 'melting'. Do you mean by this a change of viscosity of a pocket of gel (vitreous). If so, has it become more or less viscous? And are you suggesting that the pocket of vitreous, by its movement or traction, may be stimulating the retina and so causing the flash sensation? I note the advice to have a follow-up visit with an ophthalmologist to check for PVD.
I look forward to your reply and then will be happy to provide feedback.
Best wishes.
Expert:  Dr. Stan replied 4 years ago.
Thank you so much:

Yes, by melting I meant that the vitreous (clear gel inside the eye) has changed viscosity and become less viscous. Also, the movement or traction of the melted vitreous causes the stimulation of the retina to produce sensation such as the flashes. You definitely understood what I explained. God bless.

It was a pleasure to assist you. Please, allow me get credit for my time and effort in assisting you and press the ACCEPT button for this assist. I will be glad to answer additional questions until you are satisfied. Thank you so much.

A Positive Feedback and/or Bonus is welcomed and appreciated.

Please note that this answer is for information only. It cannot be substituted for the visit to or the recommendation of your doctor.
Dr. Stan, Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 2690
Experience: Johns Hopkins Fellowship Trained, Certified and Licensed Medical Physician and Surgeon
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