Retina y Macula
What is the retina?
The retina is a structure that is located in the back of the eye. It is right where the images of what we see are reflected. It is full of nerve cells that transform the light stimuli into nerve signals that are sent, through the optic nerve, to our brain who interpret them.
What is the macula?
The macula is a very specific point of the retina with great relevance, since it is where what is called 'central vision' is capted. It captes what we see when we are looking at an object. The rest of the vision, called 'peripheral vision', is captured by the rest of the retina.
What is the vitreous humor?
The vitreous is the gel that fills the posterior zone of the eye and that is in direct contact with the retina.
What diseases are associated with these areas of the eye?
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD): Age-related macular degeneration (AMD): It is a disease that mostly affects the elderly. It produces a deterioration of the macula that directly affects the central vision, so it affects the ability to read, drive and almost any daily activity. The peripheral vision of the patient is reduced, so the field of vision decrease progressively. The treatment is focused on stopping the advance of the disease as soon as possible, since the lost vision is almost impossible to recover. It consists of injecting drugs into the eye. A minimum of 3 injections are performed with a period between each injection of 25-30 days. The procedure is performed with topical anesthesia (drops), and lasts about 5 minutes.
Retinal detachment: We speak of retinal detachment when there is a separation of the layers of the retina. It is usually caused by a tear through which liquid enters, which favors the separation of the layers. The causes can be diverse although it is often associated with blows and trauma. The consequence is a marked loss of the visual field.
The only possible treatment is surgical, and it is called vitrectomy. It consists in eliminating the gel that fills the eye (vitreous humor) and repositioning the part of the retina by different surgical techniques depending on each case in particular.
Floaters: These are condensations of the vitreous humor that form strands inside the eye. These project a shadow over the retina that gives the feeling that we see flies or floating spots in front of us, especially when looking at a clear surface such as a white wall or a blue sky.
The way to eliminate them is through a vitrectomy, which is the surgical technique that removes all the gel that makes up the vitreous humor and, therefore, also the condensations that make floaters appear.