Table of Contents
- What are eye floaters?
- Why do people notice an eye floater?
- What do eye floaters look like?
- What are the causes of eye floaters?
- How common are eye floaters?
- What eye diseases are associated with eye floaters?
- What are the risk factors for developing eye floaters?
- Are eye floaters dangerous?
- What types of health care professionals treat eye floaters?
- How do health care professionals diagnose eye floaters?
- Do eye floaters go away?
- What is the treatment for eye floaters?
- Can eye floaters be removed with medication?
- Can eye floaters be removed with surgery?
- Is it possible to prevent eye floaters?
- What is the prognosis for eye floaters?
Quick GuideCommon Eye Problems and Infections
What are the risk factors for developing eye floaters?
Increasing age is a significant risk factor for the development of symptoms of floaters. Being nearsighted (myopic) is a risk factor for eye floaters occurring earlier in life. The process of vitreous syneresis is accelerated in eyes that are highly myopic, and posterior vitreous detachments occur at a younger age in people who are significantly nearsighted. Diabetes is a risk factor for the development of eye floaters that arise due to diabetic retinopathy. Eye injury is an additional risk factor.
Are eye floaters dangerous?
Eye floaters can be annoying and may be anxiety-provoking, but by themselves they are not dangerous. The majority of eye floaters are caused by normal aging changes within the eye. However, a person developing the sudden appearance of eye floaters should be checked by an ophthalmologist to make certain that there is no associated eye abnormality or systemic disease that requires treatment. A sudden onset of many eye floaters or the onset of eye floaters associated with flashing lights could signify a retinal tear that requires treatment to prevent retinal detachment. A curtain or cloud in the vision or a loss of side vision could be a symptom of associated retinal detachment.
Henry, C., et al. "Endophthalmitis following pars plana vitrectomy for vitreous floaters." Clin Ophthalmol 8 (2014): 1649-1653.
Webb, B. F., et al. "of vitreous floaters in a community sample of smartphone users." International Journal of Ophthalmology 6.3 (2013): 402-405. IMAGES: