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Dr. Dan B.
Dr. Dan B., Board Certified Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 3142
Experience:  Eye surgeon experienced in cataracts, glaucoma, retina & neuro-ophthalmology
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My vision in one eye is covered by what look like thousands

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My vision in one eye is covered by what look like thousands of little dots of blood and occasional swirls of blood. This happened quite suddenly.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Dan B. replied 11 months ago.

Dr. Dan B. : Hello and thanks for your question. Have you ever had any surgery or trauma to this eye? Ate you diabetic? Significantly near-sighted?
Customer:

I am near significantly near sighted.

Dr. Dan B. : What's your prescription? The numbers?
Customer:

I'm not sure.

Dr. Dan B. : Without your glasses are you really blurry when looking at distance objects or just a little blurry?
Customer:

quite blurry

Dr. Dan B. : Do you see flashing lights or a curtain/veil coming over your vision?
Customer:

Neither--just what seem like thousands of tiny dots of blood and swirls of what look like blood

Dr. Dan B. : Do you have an ophthalmologist?
Customer:

Not presently.

Dr. Dan B. : Okay. It sounds as though you have experienced new floaters at the very least. These floating objects are tiny pieces of the vitreous jelly that occupies a large amount of the volume of the back of the eye. This vitreous jelly, when we're born, is the consistency of a jello jiggler (thick jello). As we age it liquifies and becomes more fibrous bands and water. Because of this liquification and the resultant fibrous bands that are left, there becomes more points of traction that the jelly exerts on the back of the eye where it is attached. As we move our eyes in different directions and as our pupils change shape, or even as we rub our eyes, some of these bands can become unattached from the back of the eye and a piece of it floats around, attached still to the rest of the jelly. It is this traction of the vitreous jelly on the retina that CAN produce flashing or arcing lights. These flashes tend to be small, like starbursts and are usually intermittent; they can also appear as an arcing light. One of the most important things to understand about floaters is that the process of a new floater happening can rarely lead to a retinal detachment, so it is important to know the 4 signs of a possible retinal detachment. These are: 1. sudden increase in or new floaters, 2. flashing or arcing lights that are persistent and not going away, 3. a shade/shadow/spot in your vision that you can't see light through, or 4. a large drop in your vision which doesn't improve after a few minutes. For any of these symptoms you must see an ophthalmologist as soon as possible. But this also sounds like you could be experiencing what is called a vitreous hemorrhage. Vitreous is the jelly that the blood is suspended in. There can be several causes of a vitreous hemorrhage, diabetes being the most common, but in someone with a new floater I worry about a hole, break, or tear in the retina. I would recommend seeing your eye doctor as soon as possible to assess which of these things are going on, but a defect in the retina is the most important thing to make sure is not happening. Unfortunately, the rate at which the body clears the blood is a little different for everyone. However, most start to see improvement after a month and for most it is usually cleared for the most part after 2 months. If it does not clear after this time, then a surgery is necessary to evacuate the blood. But for now I would recommend doing a few things to help lessen any more bleeding: Sleeping with your head elevated around 30 degrees is important. Don't put your head below your waist and try not to lift, push, pull, or shove anything heavier than 10 pounds. If you can avoid it, try not to take medicines like aspirin, ibuprofen, advil, aleve--these all thin the blood. That being said, if your doctor has placed you on one of these medicines for its therapeutic effect on the heart and/or blood pressure, then it would not be wise to stop them (it just may prolong the hemorrhage some). In addition, drugs like coumadin, warfarin, and plavix also thin the blood and can prolong this.I would recommend being seen by an eye doctor as soon as possible. If you don't have one that you can see this weekend, I would recommend going to an ER where there is an ophtgalmologist on- call who can examine you. Does this make sense?
Dr. Dan B. : Do you have any other questions about this?
Customer:

yes.

Customer:

yes

Dr. Dan B. : Go ahead.
Customer:

It's late Friday night. Can I wait till Monday to see a Doctor?

Dr. Dan B. : It's possible. Not being to examine you I can't say for certain that you aren't having a retinal detachment. You are, after all, at a higher risk of this because of your significant nearsightedness. I couldn't take that chance with your vision by advising you to wait until Monday. But is it possible that if you waited until Monday that you might be okay? Certainly. I just can't advise that knowing that its very possible you have something serious going on with your retina.
Customer:

Thank you.

Dr. Dan B. : My pleasure. Good luck to you. Your feedback is important to me and will help me improve my encounter with future customers. Please rate your encounter with me by providing positive feedback (by pressing the smiley face); any bonus you may feel prompted to provide would be welcomed and is appreciated. If you feel like your concerns are not resolved or you have a problem or issue with anything I have said or haven’t said, please don’t issue a negative feedback rating—My goal is your satisfaction and I would rather work together to solve your concerns, until you are satisfied, than have you leave our encounter unhappy and unsatisfied. My opinion is solely informative and does not constitute a formal medical opinion or recommendation. For a formal medical opinion and/or recommendation you must see an eye doctor. Thanks for your inquiry!
Dr. Dan B., Board Certified Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 3142
Experience: Eye surgeon experienced in cataracts, glaucoma, retina & neuro-ophthalmology
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