The health of your retina is vital to giving you clear vision. It is a thin layer of nerve cells in the rear of the eye that takes light and sends signals to the brain and optic nerve to create an image.

If the retina is damaged or is suffering from disease, it has a huge impact on your ability to see.  Here are some ways your retina affects your health and ways to treat them.


Retinal disease can take quite a few different forms and the symptoms can be indicative of more than one possible cause. If you have any of these symptoms you need to see an eye specialist for a correct diagnosis.

  • Floaters-things floating across your line of vision
  • Loss of sight
  • When looking straight ahead items looked misshapen ie: waviness in straight lines
  • Side vision distortion

Retinal conditions and diseases

  • Detached retina This condition is usually caused as the result of a tear in the retina that allows fluid to get under the retina and push it away from the tissue that is below it.
  • Macular degeneration In this condition the center if the retina is affected. Vision in the center of your field of vision can become blurred or disappear altogether.
  • Retinitis pigmentosa In this genetic disease night vision becomes increasingly bad as well as peripheral vision. No cure has yet been found.
  • Diabetic retinopathy Diabetes can adversely affect the retina causing decreased vision due to swelling from damaged capillaries in the eye.

Retinal detachment surgery

Three types of retinal detachment surgery are commonly used.

Vitrectomy The fluid in the eye is removed and replaced with gas or air.

Scleral buckling In this procedure a small piece of silicone is attached to the sclera which causes the sclera to indent.

Pneumatic retinopexy. Gas or air is injected into the eye.

An unhealthy retina can affect your health and lead to loss of vision. Your eye care professional has the tools to help keep this from happening.