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Detached Retina: Causes and Treatments

Question: I have a detached retina. How did it happen?

Answer from: Dr. Linda Chous, O.D., eye care expert

The retina is the lining inside your eye. During a dilated comprehensive eye exam, your doctor can detect early signs of a detached retina.

The comments shared by experts in Ask the Expert do not reflect UnitedHealthcare views nor benefit plans. It is general educational information only, is not intended as medical advice, and does not replace consultation with a doctor, pharmacist, or other health care professional. Contact an appropriate health care professional with any questions and to determine what may be right for you. Check your health care benefit plan for specific coverage details.
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Meet Dr. Linda Chous, Eye Care Expert

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Answering your questions about eyes and vision

Dr. Linda Chous, chief eye care officer for UnitedHealthcare, has been running her own private practice for more than 20 years. She received her doctor of optometry degree with honors from the Southern California College of Optometry and is a licensed optometrist in Minnesota and California.

The comments shared by experts in Ask the Expert do not reflect UnitedHealthcare views nor benefit plans. It is general educational information only, is not intended as medical advice, and does not replace consultation with a doctor, pharmacist, or other health care professional. Contact an appropriate health care professional with any questions and to determine what may be right for you. Check your health care benefit plan for specific coverage details.
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The comments shared by experts in Ask the Expert do not reflect UnitedHealthcare views nor benefit plans. It is general educational information only, is not intended as medical advice, and does not replace consultation with a doctor, pharmacist, or other health care professional. Contact an appropriate health care professional with any questions and to determine what may be right for you. Check your health care benefit plan for specific coverage details.
Transcript

A viewer has a detached retina and is wondering how this happens. Well to answer the question, you have to go back and kind of think about how the eye is formed and the structures inside the eye and the retina is a lining inside the eye, it’s the camera film inside the eye and this camera film, this lining can become detached from the back of the eye. And when it does, the camera film doesn’t work any more because it receives its blood supply from the back of the eye so it’s like, it sort of like dies off a bit. So if it’s caught very early, treatment can be given to reattach the retina to the back of the eye and that can be done with laser surgery and other treatments as well. But the important thing to remember is that sometimes there can be little tiny holes and tears in the back of the eye that can progress to a retinal detachment. With a dilated comprehensive eye exam, we can take a look and find those little holes and tears and sort of like a stitch in time saves nine kind of concept, we can keep those little holes and tears from progressing on to retinal detachment. So that’s another reason why it’s so important to have regular, comprehensive eye exams.