Signs of Detached Retina

Johns Hopkins Health Alerts: Vision
** 3 Signs of Retinal Detachment You Should Know
 In a normal eye, the retina, a thin, light-sensitive layer of nerve tissue lining the back of your eye, presses up against an underlying layer of cells known as the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). But sometimes the retina can become detached from the RPE in a manner similar to peeling wallpaper. Retinal detachment is a serious, vision-threatening condition that requires immediate attention.
 What causes retinal detachment?
 Most commonly, a hole, tear, or break in the retina enables fluid from the vitreous humor to seep in under the retina, causing it to separate from the RPE. A less frequent cause of retinal detachment is scar tissue on the surface of the retina that contracts, causing the retina to pull away from the underlying cells. In some cases, fluid leaks into the area underneath the retina, even though there are no retinal tears or breaks.
 Know the Signs
 The symptoms of a retinal tear or detachment can occur suddenly, or they may develop gradually over time. If you experience the new onset of any of the symptoms below, contact your ophthalmologist immediately. Prompt treatment offers the best chances of vision recovery.          
 *Floaters. These are the tiny spots and squiggles that may drift across your field of vision. Floaters are usually benign, but they may be a sign of a retinal tear or detachment, especially if they suddenly become more numerous.
                 * Flashes. These are brief sparkles or lightning streaks that can appear at the edges of your field of vision; flashes, too, can indicate a retinal tear or detachment, particularly if they occur in conjunction with new floaters. A streak of light that is seen only with the eyes open and exposed to light is common and usually related to reflections off the implant after cataract surgery. But flashing lights that are seen in the dark or with the eyes closed are more likely to originate from the retina.
                 * A curtain. A dark shadow or curtain that covers part of your field of vision is a possible sign that a small retinal tear has developed into a retinal detachment.