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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 7755
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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I was recently the victim of an assault in which the person

Resolved Question:

I was recently the victim of an assault in which the person sprayed a harsh industrial strength household cleaner in my eyes twice before doing other things. Within about 1 hour, my vision became very distorted and my eyes blurry. By the next day, my vision was gone. Within 3 days, I was told I had sustained a full retinal detachment in one of my eyes only to be followed by 3 subsequent tears and a full macular hole.

My question is: Could the chemical cause the retinal detachment or was it all just coincidence?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 2 years ago.

Dr. Rick :

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

Dr. Rick :

It is very unlikely that even a harsh industrial strength household cleaner sprayed into your eyes contributed to your retinal detachment and macular hole.

Dr. Rick :

The cleaner could, however, cause a chemical burn to your cornea, conjunctiva and peri-orbital structures. Also, a compound that has a basic pH could cause inflammation and damage to the anterior structures of your eye.

Dr. Rick :

Was there physical trauma?

Customer :

So would you think it was just coincidence? I had Lasik surgery almost 10 years ago and have mainained better than perfect vision in both eyes since then until this incident. Then my vision was gone and now I am completely blind in my Right eye and have moderate corneal scarring on the left.

Dr. Rick :

Yes I do. Blunt trauma, say from being hit about the head and face, could contribute to your retinal problems, but I really don't think the chemicals had anything to do with it.

Customer :

No there wasn't physical trauma to the eye, but when I tried to flush the eye with water, I experienced a burn that was indescribable then shortly after is when I lost my vision.

Dr. Rick :

I can understand the burning sensation. As a retina specialist with almost two decades of experience I have never seen, nor have I heard of, topical chemicals on the eye causing retinal holes, tears, detachment or macular hole formation.

Dr. Rick :

Does this mean that it is impossible? No. Stranger things have happened, but I really think it is highly unlikely.

Customer :

Thank-you for your input. My doctors are very good and I do trust them, but the surgeon has never committed to the connection between the two events, but stated that she didn't want to get tied up in legal affairs. Sp I never truly knew whether this was actually the cause, but she didn't want to be involved or if she truly felt there was no relationship. My insurance company is denying payment as a result to this lack of committment on her part so I'm trying to seek any information I can so I will know for myself.

Dr. Rick :

Sorry to hear that your insurance company is being so difficult after all you have gone through.

Dr. Rick :

It has been my pleasure to help. Let me know if there is anything else I can do for you.

Dr. Rick :

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Customer :

Thank-you! And thank-you so much for your time. I greatly appreciate it

Dr. Rick :

:o)

Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 7755
Experience: Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
Dr. Rick and other Eye Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 2 years ago.
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Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 2 years ago.
Let me know if there are there any other concerns or issues you would like to discuss on this topic.

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