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Retinal Vein Occlusion:
Retinal vein occlusion is a major cause of vision loss in the Unites States. A retinal vein occlusion (RVO) is a blockage of blood flow in one of the retinal veins. It can occur in either a branch retinal vein (branch retinal vein occlusion, or BRVO) or in the central retinal vein, or CRVO). The occlusion causes bleeding in a section of the retina (BRVO) or throughout the entire retina (central vein occlusion, or CRVO), and can lead to swelling of the macula (macular edema).
Source: America Academy of ophthalmology
If oxygen cannot get to the retina from backed up blood flow known and causes ischemia that can occur in severe cases and lead to abnormal new blood vessel formation on the retina and the iris (neovascularization). These abnormal blood vessels can cause extensive bleeding into the vitreous cavity (the clear gel that fills the back of the eye) and elevated eye pressure.
Retinal vein occlusions are more common in patients 65 years and older. Once a retinal vein occlusion occurs, there is an approximately 10% chance of developing an RVO in the fellow eye. The most common causes of RVO are high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, glaucoma, atherosclerosis, hypercoagulability (blood clots abnormally), and vasculitis (inflammation of blood vessels).
Diagnosis of retinal vein occlusions can be made in our office with a dilated eye exam and advanced retinal imaging devices which can detect the 3 major causes of vision loss in this condition- macular edema, ischemia, and neovascularization. Treatment is targeted toward these causes and include intraocular injections, laser photocoagulation, and, in severe cases, retinal surgery.
Dr. Gloth is a retinal specialist with extensive experience in all the types of retinal vein occlusion therapy. He has extensive experience for over 10 years.