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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 8529
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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I have a eye floater that is continuous, circular in nature

Resolved Question:

I have a eye floater that is continuous, circular in nature in my left eye. It first occurred yesterday, then subsided. It started again this afternoon and has continued for a couple of hours. Since it is Sat, can I wait until Monday to call my eye doctor? I have had RK surgery to correct near sightedness
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 4 years ago.
Chat Conversation Started
Rick :

hi. I'll be happy to help you with your question.

Rick :

How long did this floater last, or is it still present

Rick :

Has this ever happened before and have you noticed anything in your right eye?

Customer :

This has never happened before. I have had small floaters from time to time, but this is larger. The floater is still present. It is circular with a tail and it moves around my eye. Nothing is my right eye

Rick :

Ok. Have you noticed any flashes of light? Does the floater have a red tint to it?

Customer :

No flashes of light. no red tinit. It is dark in color

Rick :

Ok. It sounds like you have a vitreous detachment in your left eye.

Customer :

what does that mean?

Customer :

I read what it means, but I need to know if I can wait until MOnday to call my eye doctor

Rick :

Let me explain a little bit about this condition. Floaters are really tiny pieces of the vitreous jelly that occupies a large amount of the volume of the back of the eye. This vitreous jelly, when we're born, is the consistency of a jello jiggler (thick jello). As we age it liquifies and becomes more fibrous bands and water.


 


Because of this liquification and the resultant fibrous bands that are left, there becomes more points of traction that the jelly exerts on the back of the eye where it is attached. As we move our eyes in different directions and as our pupils change shape, or even as we rub our eyes, some of these bands can become unattached from the back of the eye and a piece of it floats around, attached still to the rest of the jelly. It is this traction of the vitreous jelly on the retina that can produce these flashes. These flashes tend to be small, like starbursts and are usually intermittent; they can also appear as an arcing light. This process can happen more frequently in an eye that has had surgery.


 


One of the most important things to understand about floaters is that the process of a new floater happening can rarely lead to a retinal detachment, so it is important to know the 4 signs of a possible retinal detachment. These are: 1. sudden increase in or new floaters, 2. flashing or arcing lights that are persistent and not going away, 3. a shade/shadow/spot in your vision that you can't see light through, or 4. a large drop in your vision which doesn't improve after a few minutes. For any of these symptoms you must see an ophthalmologist as soon as possible.

Rick :

Oh, sorry about all the extra information. Yes, as long as you are not having symptoms of a retinal detachement as noted above you should be fine. When you call your ophthalmologist I am sure the front desk staff will know to get you in ASAP, if not stress to them that you want to be seen by the ophthalmologist on Monday.

Customer :

Ok, it doesn't sound like an emergency. I will call my eye doctor on Monday. Thanks so much

Rick :

Your welcome. Have a great weekend and enjoy the Packers game tomorrow :) If you would be so kind, please help me get credit for my efforts in answering your questions and press the ACCEPT button for this encounter. I would also be happy to continue to answer any more questions you have until we have resolved your concern.


 

Customer :

will do, thanks

Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 8529
Experience: Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick
Ophthalmologist & Retina Specialist
5461 Satisfied Customers
Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest