It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Dr. Rahul Reddy. Click here to read more
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Dr. Rahul Reddy. Click here to read more Patient Portal Career Center (602) 242-4928

Macular Holes-Causes, Diagnosis, and Surgical Interventions

A comprehensive eye exam at Associated Retina Consultants can detect many underlying eye conditions and diseases that you may not even be aware you have because symptoms are not present. When you come in for an appointment for retinal imaging, one of the tests performed will be optical coherence tomography (OCT). An optical coherence test is a noninvasive, diagnostic technique for accurately identifying and assessing layers of the retina in microscopic detail by scanning a beam of light to create 3D images. It also shows the fibers of the optic nerve that connects to the brain. Light waves take cross-section photos of the retina to map and measure the thickness of the retina’s layers. These images can reveal eye diseases such as diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and macular holes. 

A macular hole develops when an opening forms in the macula, the tiny 5mm part of the retina located at the back of the eye that is responsible for central vision, most of your color vision and the fine details in what you see. Having an intact, functioning macula is essential for quality vision. Macular holes form because of natural aging that causes changes in the eye. Usually the jelly-like substance that fills the eye, called vitreous, changes consistency and begins to shrink, pulling on the central macula causing a hole. Symptoms of a macular hole include blurred vision, distorted vision where straight lines appear wavy and difficulty reading small print.

While very small holes may heal on their own, in most cases a macular hole will require surgical intervention with a procedure called a vitrectomy. The eye surgeon will make an incision to the outer layer of the eye and then will make a small cut in the sclera, the white part of the eye. The vitreous will be removed along with any scar tissue as necessary. Depending upon the patient’s needs, the macular hole will either be repaired with a laser or the insertion of a gas bubble that will hold the retina in place as the hole heals. The vitreous will be replaced with another type of solution, usually silicone oil or saline. Vision after surgery will depend on how long the patient had the macular hole and if any permanent damage was caused to the retina. This is why early intervention with retinal testing is key to resolving eye conditions before you even know you have them. 
Don’t delay in scheduling your next appointment. Call 602-242-4928 to schedule your exam at Associated Retina Consultants. We encourage you to visit WEBSITE for frequently asked questions, patient forms, and more information on the benefits of all services we offer.