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pippistrellodaqua, Optometrist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 134
Experience:  Specialty in contact lenses, medical eye management, LASIK
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I am 20 and have heavy nearsightness (L-9.50 R-8.50).

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Hello, I am 20 and have heavy nearsightness (L-9.50 R-8.50). Recently my opthalmologist found a retinal tear in my left eye and repaired it with laser. I am very worried about my condition as I see floaters and flashes in both eyes. I would like to know 1)whether is any treatment to prevent further retinal tears. 2)How many years of vision I can retain, optimistically and pessimistically. 3)Whether it is safe to fly as I attend uni in the UK. 4)Is it neccessary that I see a doctor when I arrive in the UK if I can fly. Thanks in advance.
pippistrellodaqua :

Great questions. The higher amount of nearsightedness certainly contributed to your retinal tear. High nearsighted eyes always have thin spots in the retina which can become so thin that they break and cause a tear or hole in the retina. You absolutely did the right thing by having it lasered. The laser treatment acts as a spot weld surrounding the retinal tear and will prevent it from developing something more malignant like a retinal detachment. It is nearly impossible that the lasered retinal tear will create a detachment of the entire retina. I would have absolutely no concerns flying and do not recommend the need for you to see a doctor in the UK. Again, you did the right thing by having it lasered and there is no other treatment that would be required. You should have many years of good vision based on what you have told me. The name of the game with retinal tears is early detection and early intervention. At age 20 we certainly detected the problem early and you had it fixed via laser. There should be no concern whatsoever with this tear in the future. New tears or holes may occur, however, and they should be treated in the same manner as the first one. Yearly (or 6 month) exams are indicated for the rest of your life in order to detect any new holes or tears quickly. I would not lose sleep over the condition. It is extremely common and I can't stress enough that you have done the right thing by having it fixed. I will be available throughout the day to answer any followup questions you may have. Please consider leaving a positive rating when your questions have been answered fully.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thanks for your answer.
What makes me worry is that the surgeon writed "still possibility of retinal detachment" on my surgery report after doing laser on my eye. However when I went for a follow-up examination 14 days after doing laser doctor said that the scar looks very good. I didn't know whether the surgeon meant that the sealed tear has a possibility to become a detachment or there may be another tear which may cause a detachment. Since you said the sealed tear is nearly impossible to become a detachment, I suppose the surgeon meant other tears, right?

Btw, is the flashing I experience a symptom of posterior vitreous detachment or it has possibly another cause? Will it go away over time?

Can I take YAG laser treatment aka laser vitreolysis to get rid of the floaters? Sometimes the floaters are very disturbing.

Correct. The chances of the first tear detaching are virtually zero. New holes or tears may occur and for that reason there is still a possibility of detachment, but from new problems. The flashes of light are a sign of a PVD (posterior vitreous detachment) and almost nothing else. Watch for them carefully. If they increase in duration or intensity a second look would be indicated. A YAG treatment for floaters usually is not indicated for normal process floaters. If the floaters were due to diabetes or other conditions it may be indicated, but in my experience that is rare. Thanks again for the questions and let me know if you have further follow-up questions.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you very much for your helpful answer. Just one more question.

Doctor advised me to avoid acute physical activity. Does it include having sex? Do I have to avoid face-down position when having sex?
No, sex should not be a problem. Contact sports should be avoided whenever possible, but I've always said that one should enjoy life. I wouldn't be concerned about it.
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