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Dr. James
Dr. James, Board Certified Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 2286
Experience:  Eye Physician and Surgeon
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I'm having a vision disturbance in my right eye. It sorta

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I'm having a vision disturbance in my right eye. It sorta looks like a Nike "swoop", but thinner, just below my central field of vision (swoop starts at center). That area behaves the same as when you stare at a bright light then look away, you can't see where the spot is burned onto your retina. I was just laying and watching tv when it started, I went to bed and now in the morning I still see it, especially when I look at something bright and blink. This has happened before, but never lasted this long. I've gone to an ophthalmologist in the past but they never see anything. What could this be?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. James replied 7 years ago.

Do you have diabetes?
Is the swoop constantly there or intermittent?
Any decrease in vision aside from what you are describing?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I do not have diabetes. The swoop is always there but it depending what i'm looking at is not always noticable - if I stare straight ahead without blinking it seems to fade, but if I blink over and over it's quite obvious and always in the same place (not a floater). If i stare at this bright white computer screen and blink the area of the swoop looks gray. Very noticeable when reading.
I don't think i have any other decrease in vision - if I hadn't tried the blinking and such to "see" the shape, etc, I would have just said I'm having some blurry vision in right eye.
Expert:  Dr. James replied 7 years ago.

As you correctly mentioned, a floater can cause these types of disturbances, but is often gray appearance and moves when your eyes move. What you are describing is more suggestive of a blind spot. This can happen when there is something on the retina such as bleeding or swelling. It is best to have a dilated eye exam to see if there is any spot on the back of the eye correlating to the 'swoop' that you are seeing.

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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I've had that exam twice before and they see nothing. If I do it again and they see nothing, then what? What could be the cause of this? I've had no injury, no diabetes, pretty healthy otherwise.

It's also a weekend, not sure where to go besides emergency room ($$). Would it be ok that I wait until Monday?
Expert:  Dr. James replied 7 years ago.
If the symptoms are stable, you can wait until Monday. Since this is a change from your last exam, you should have a repeated eye exam to see if anything has changed. In the meantime, test your vision with the AMSLER grid to assess if the blind spot is improving or worsening.

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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Could you give me some ideas of the possible causes?

Also, if they don't see anything at the eye doctor, what should be my next step?

I was told once that this 'could' be caused by a blockage of blood flow to a particular spot in my eye - does this sound plausible? Which couldn't that also be a risk for stroke?

Thank you.
Expert:  Dr. James replied 7 years ago.
If the eye exam is normal, then your doctor would likely observe it to see if the symptoms are getting worse. He may have you do a visual field test to look for the defect you are seeing. Glaucoma can cause blind spots, but usually not as sudden as you are describing them.

As I mentioned earlier, pinpoint bleeding in the retina can cause a sudden blindspot. This can be related to high blood pressure, but more commonly diabetes. If there is bleeding, then your eye doctor would send you to your primary care doctor to check for that. A blockage of blood flow could also cause a blind spot, but these defects are usually more extensive than what you are describing.