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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 8068
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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Hi- the eye flashes I am experiencing occur intermittently

Customer Question

Hi- the eye flashes I am experiencing occur intermittently at the outer perameter of my left eye without pain or headache. They appear as short rapid short vertical lines. On the first day it was as if there was a white laser light doodling. As I stated they have become multiple short vertical streaks. This has be occuring for the last five days.Hoping for some advice. Thank you.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 3 years ago.

Dr. Rick :

Hi. I'm online and happy to answer your question today.

Dr. Rick :

Welcome to chat

Dr. Rick :

You are likely experiencing a PVD or posterior vitreous detachment, a common event that happens in many people.

You have a thick gel material in the middle of your eyes called the vitreous. Over time as it liquefies, this gel material collapses on itself, forms little clumps that you can see as dots, lines or bugs. As these clumps form the vitreous pulls away from the wall of the eye. In the process it can stimulate the retina -- causing the flashes that you may see.

It is recommended that you see your ophthalmologist to look at the retina to make sure there are no problems such as a retinal hole or tear. In most cases, there are no problems, but this exam is precautionary and allows for preventative treatment of any lesions that are found.

If you notice a sudden increase in floaters, flashes of light (like a lightning storm), or a shadow/veil in the periphery of your vision, this can be worrisome for a retinal detachment. You would need to contact your ophthalmologist promptly in that case.


 

Dr. Rick :

Are you available to chat?

Dr. Rick :

The flashes of light mean that your retina is being pulled on by the vitreous. As long as you don't have any of the symptoms of retinal involvement there is no need to seek emergency eye care.

Dr. Rick :

Does this make sense to you?

Dr. Rick :

I guess you have stepped away from your computer. We can use the Q&A system to 'text message' each other. An email will be sent to each of us every time something is posted to this thread.


 

Dr. Rick :

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Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 3 years ago.
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Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 3 years ago.
Let me know if there are there any other concerns or issues you would like to discuss on this topic.
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 8068
Experience: Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
Dr. Rick and other Eye Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you Dr. Rick---One thing I forgot to mention is that I am a Type II diabetic.
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 3 years ago.
Ok. I would suggest that you get in for a complete eye exam in the next week or two and at that time your ophthalmologist can check on the retina and for any changes in your eyes that might be due to your diabetes.

Of course, if things get worse, you have any of those "worry" symptoms noted above or you are just concerned, have your eyes examined sooner. As they say "An ophthalmologist visit in time saves nine..." ;o)

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