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Ask Dr. A.S. Desai Your Own Question
Dr. A.S. Desai
Dr. A.S. Desai, Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 2437
Experience:  MS Ophthalmology with 13 years of surgical expereince
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I am a male of 64 years and have light flashes in my left

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I am a male of 64 years and have light flashes in my left eye.I went to the eye specialist after two days and she told me after examining my eye
that I have pvd. She told me you it is annoying but by time it will be less. Did not tell me to come back. Can you explain to me what pvd is and if I should take a second opinion?


Thank you for the question. I am Dr.A.S.Desai, certified ophthalmologist and I look forward to answering this question.

Kindly give me a few minutes to get back with the typed detailed answer.

Thank you

PVD is an age related change occurring in the back of the eye. The thick gel in the middle of the eye called as vitreous begins to get detached from its surrounding , resulting in symptoms of flashes and floaters. However, floaters are not noticed in your case. The detached vitreous can clump and cause momentary blurring of vision. Being a floater it usually comes and goes out of visual field.

Flashes of light occur due to traction on the retina during the vitreous detachment. PVD can be partial or total and can occur as a single episode of separation or might take longer time to separate.

It is a common condition noticed with increasing age and is not something to worry about. A dilated eye exam should be performed by an ophthalmologist to look at the periphery of the reina. In case tiny retinal holes are noted then they can be followed up with annual dilated eye exam. If multiple, they can even be sealed with the help of lasers. Since you have not been asked to come back, it looks like there are no holes in the periphery of the retina. I don't think it would require a second opinion.

Thank you and best wishes

Do remember to rate this response positively if it was up to your satisfaction.



Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thank you. How long will I see the flashes? Weeks? Months?
Only see them in the evening and in the dark. While closing my eyes when
I sleep I do not see them.Is that typical?

Thank you for the reply.

The flashes would be noted until complete separation of vitreous occurs. The time taken for complete separation or detachment of vitreous varies from person to person. It can take few days to weeks to months sometimes. It is typical to see them in dark.

I believe it is alright to ignore the flashes noted with PVD. The only time they become significant is when there is a sudden shower of floaters along with blurred vision as if looking through a veil or curtain. These symptoms are suggestive of retinal detachment which is an emergency.

I guess nothing to worry regarding PVD as of now.

Dr. A.S. Desai and other Eye Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Hi Dr Desai
I read more about pvd on internet and it keeps me busy that there is a risk factor of 10-15%
that it will cause detachment. Planning to go back to the eye specialist nex week.
Can you give me more info that takes my worries away?

Hello again,

It is better to keep away from the internet as you wouldn't know how much to believe in the content written there. Not everything given is true in each case. yes, there is a small risk of retinal detachment but it is very small. If there are not peripheral retinal tears or holes then the risk is minimal or not there. In an otherwise healthy eye the risk is very less. I hope that makes you feel better. The next week visit to the eye specialist is not going to reveal anything different than what was seen before. But if it helps to get peace of mind then go ahead.

Best wishes and regards

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Thank you for your advise.

My pleasure!

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Dr Desai
I was back at eye doctor. No light flashes anymore. The optometrist checked my eyes for possible cataract in other eye. She said that macular in left eye is bigger than other eye.
What does that mean?

Hello ,

Good to know that the flashes of light have disappeared. However I am not sure about what is bigger in the left macular region. Macula is the most important seeing area of the eye. Whatever the optometrist noted is most likely to be a physiological variation between the two eyes. As long as the vision in both eyes is good and equal, I don't see any reason to worry about.

Thank you and best wishes