Hi. I reviewed the conversation you had with Dr. Susan on this site the other day and I agree with everything the two of you discussed.
What you are now experiencing, and it is totally unrelated to your PSC cataract, is called a vitreous
detachment. I am a retina specialist and deal with this condition all the time. Here is some information on this:
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 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.
Your floaters are increasing, most likely, because your vitreous is still in the process of detaching from your retina. Also, since they are "new to you" and you are concerned about them, your brain may just be paying more attention to them....
Since your surgeon has examined your retina and found everything to be OK I agree -- it should be safe to proceed with your cataract surgery at this time. Is there a slightly higher risk of tearing
a hole in your retina during the any pressure changes that may occur during surgery, or should your posterior capsule tear? Yes. But I would not think this slight additional risk, in light of a recent dilated exam showing an intact retina, is large enough to warrant canceling cataract surgery.
I think you will be fine and pleasantly surprised with your clear vision after your PSC cataract is gone :-)
Does this make sense to you?
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