Vitreous Separation

Recently I posted about the program at Volunteer eye doctors provide no cost eye exams to eligible people who have no insurance.

Today I had a complete eye exam with a nearby provider. The exam was thorough and professional, and I got the answer to a question I’ve been asking for ten years.

I’ve had the little black thread floaters for decades. I learned to just look past them and they didn’t bother me. The thing no doctor before had been able to diagnose is the weird floaty things that seem like little snips of a jellyfish drifting by. I can’t see through them, and they interfere with close work, on the computer or reading.

This doctor could see them and knew right away that they are caused by vitreous separation. The ‘vitreous humour’ is the clear gel that fills the eye between the lens and the retina in the eyeball. It is full of tiny fibers that attach it to the retina. With age, these fibers gradually let go, allowing bits of the vitreous to float free, and block my view.

There’s no medical danger in this, unless it pulls the retina loose. If that happens I’ll see a curtain of darkness come down, and need to call the eye doctor right away. That only happens 15% of the time.

Their program is largely aimed at seniors, but they serve younger people also. If it’s been a while since you had an eye exam and you have no insurance, check it out.


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