I know what the doctor did and the type of tear that you had.
I'm glad you were able to get in for laser treatment before your tear progressed into a large retinal detachment. you are right in what you have learned in your internet research. The tear was most likely caught before your retina detached.
The laser "fence" will take about two weeks to scar down enough where the chance of the small amount of residual subretinal fluid will not tear through and lead to a detachment. In two decades of practice a tiny bit of fluid (which it sounds like you have) will usually absorb (or in some cases just stay there) without causing any problems.
The injection of gas that your doctor is discussing is called a pneumatic retinopexy. He is talking about using a short acting dilute gas, probably SF6. This bubble, when you hold your head in the correct position, will float up and "iron" the fluid out of the area of the tear by putting a liquid free cover of the gas and allowing the natural pumps in the retina to get rid of the tiny bit of fluid present. If patients follow the post gas injection instructions the gas is successful in about 95% of cases in getting rid of the fluid.
This gas injection does, however, carry risks such as infection, bleeding, further retinal detachment and future cataract formation.
So. The what is the big question? It is do you need the pneumatic retinopexy or can the fluid just stay safely behind the laser fence?
If I could examine you I could easily give you an answer. However, it seems from what you have posted that your doctor was not too insistent that you have the gas injected in your eye and was more just reviewing with you what can be done..
From what you have posted, I think you should ask the doctor what he would do if you were his wife...and follow his advice. At this point,my feeling from what you have shared with me is that you can safely go without the gas bubble and just, for the next two weeks at least, take thing very easy.
Of course, if you notice flashes of light
, a lot of floaters or a curtain coming across your vision from any direction, get in to see you eye surgeon without delay.
Whew! I'm going to have to give my fingers the rest of the night off lol!
Is there anything else you would like to discuss at this point or have all your questions been answered to your satisfaction?
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Thanks in advance,
Dr. Rick MD FACS
Have a good evening and let me know if I can do anything else to help.