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Macular Hole

Macular holes are defects that can develop in the macula (the central area of the retina). This is the area where fine detail is visualized. A macular hole is usually noticed when there is a sudden decrease in vision in one eye. Sometimes the decrease in vision is only noticed when the unaffected eye is covered.  Macular holes are most often related to the aging process, and are most common in people over 60.

Some symptoms of a macular hole include:

  • Central vision becomes blurred or distorted can occur in the early stages
  • Blind spots may also be noticed

Rarely, macular holes may resolve without treatment, but we recommend you see your ophthalmologist immediately if you notice a sudden loss of vision in one eye, so he/she can determine if treatment is necessary. This can help prevent permanent vision loss.

The most common treatment for macular hole is a surgery called vitrectomy, which removes the vitreous gel that fills the space between the lens and the retina. A mixture of air and gas is then inserted to temporarily close the hole, allowing it to heal. This treatment may require a face-down positioning to ensure lasting results. Some discomfort is to be expected following surgery. An eye patch will be used on the night of surgery.  During the recovery period eye drops consisting of an anti-inflammatory and antibiotic will be used. For more information about this surgery, please contact our office.

Illustration of a macular hole
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