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Hi. I'm online and happy to answer your question today.
Do these black spots float around in your vision? Have you noticed any flashes of light?
They do float around, but no flashes of light. I am diabetic and my eye doctor has told me about spots on my eyes.
How badly would you say that your vision is blurred in the affected eye? Can you see to read? Recognize faces? See the TV across the room etc?
I can do all of these things.
Ok. You most likely are experiencing a posterior vitreous detachement.
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.
What is this?
Given your history of diabetes, however, it is possible that your floaters are a sign that there has been some bleeding inside your eye. With this in mind I think it would be a good idea for you to have a complete examination by an ophthalmologist in the near future. This is not an emergency (unless things suddenly get worse....) but you should try to be seen within a week or two if possible.
Does this make sense to you?
Yes it does. What is the treatment?
What can you do about the floaters? Well, floaters don't go away, and they don't really get worse. Over time they tend to "sink" out of your central vision and you brain "filters" them out so you don't notice them so much anymore. They almost never cause significant visual problems except, of course, if they cause a secondary retinal detachment as discussed above. The only way to decrease or remove the floaters is with a major surgery called a vitrectomy. As a retinal specialist for almost 2 decades I've only done this procedure to remove floaters in a handful of cases.
If there is bleeding inside your eye from diabetes the treatment depends upon the cause of the blood. Usually it involves laser treatment, which is done in the office.
Is there anything else you would like me to review with you tonight?
I will call my eye doctor Monday. Thank you so much. You were very helpful.
My pleasure. Have a good evening.
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