Retinal Artery Occlusion: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment Options

Retinal Artery

What is Retinal Artery Occlusion?

Retinal artery occlusion (RAO) is a medical condition that occurs when the blood supply to the retina is blocked and cannot reach the nerve cells. This can cause serious vision problems, including blindness if not treated promptly. RAO can be caused by a variety of conditions and is more common in elderly people.

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What are the Causes of Retinal Artery Occlusion?

The most common cause of RAO is an embolism, which is a blockage in an artery caused by particles such as cholesterol and plaque. Other potential causes include a tear in the artery, a tumor, high blood pressure, and an aneurysm.

Symptoms of Retinal Artery Occlusion

The primary symptom of retinal artery occlusion is a sudden loss of vision in one eye. Other symptoms include:

  • Blurry vision
  • Inability to distinguish color
  • Dark spots or circles in the vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Complete vision loss

Treatment Options for Retinal Artery Occlusion

If you’ve been diagnosed with RAO, it’s important to start treatment as soon as possible to prevent further vision damage. Common treatment options for RAO include:

  • Medication
  • Laser Therapy
  • Surgery
  • Vitrectomy
  • Optic Nerve Avulsion

Your ophthalmologist will determine the best course of treatment based on the severity of your symptoms.

Health Implications of Retinal Artery Occlusion

RAO can have serious, long-term health implications. If the condition is not treated promptly, it can lead to permanent vision loss. It can also increase your risk of stroke and other vascular diseases.

If you have any of the symptoms associated with RAO, it’s important to speak to your doctor as soon as possible for proper diagnosis and treatment. Prompt treatment can help prevent long-term complications and preserve your vision.

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