Much is heard of eye diseases, many congenital, but little about the awareness and treatment of macular holes.
Blurry and distorted vision can be the root cause of a developed macular hole and is most likely to affect the over sixties age group as they are linked to the aging process.
The only area of the eye that sees full colour, clear vision is at a sharp point at the macula. A small spot in the centre of the retina can develop holes resulting in vision decrease in the eye in particular with fine focusing which we use to distinguish and recognise faces for example, and for night vision.
Macular holes as well as cysts and tears are not the same as eye related eye diseases although they too are more often problematic and diagnosed in those over the age of sixty.
They can be brought about by onset diabetes,myopia, a detached retina injury,vitreous shrinkage or separation, general eye injury or Best's disease ( which is congenital). An untreated macular hole will worsen over period of time in three general stages.
- Foveal detachments — about 50 percent worsen without treatment.
- Partial-thickness holes — about 70 percent worsen without treatment.
- Full-thickness holes — most worsen without treatment.
To prevent vision loss treatment should be sought at the earliest intervention. A gas and air bubble is the usual form of treatment which puts pressure on the edges of the macular hole, allowing it to heal.