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Question: Floaters in the eye - how can this be corrected?


 acautus - Sun Apr 26, 2009 10:26 pm

Last week, I experienced what the doctor told me are floaters in the eye. I am 59. l was told that the problem was due to aging and because I was short-sighted. I did some research in the internet and understand the cause of the problem a little better. I also understand that there is currently no cure for this problem although there are some claims of lasik procedure that could correct the problem. I read also
that for some people, the vitreous could settle down to the bottom and hence reduce the incidence of floaters.

My questions are :
a) since there is no procedure to correct the floater problem, is there any thing one can do to minimise the increase of floaters as one grows older?
b) can correction of short-sightedness prevent or delay the onset of floaters?
c) as floaters is caused by aging, can I assume that the situation will only get worse as one ages? Is this assumption correct?
d) statistically, what is the percentage of floater sufferers that are lucky enough to have the vitreous settle down to the bottom and the effect of floater minimised?

Appreciate your help in gaining more insights into the floater problem. Thank you!
 John Kenyon, CNA - Tue May 19, 2009 10:01 pm

User avatar HI there --

While floaters do tend to increase with age, it seems to be only up to a point, at which they reach a plateau and don't just keep accumulating forever. I'm not sure how short-sightedness figures into this, since floaters are essentially debris, so I'm not sure if vision correction would have any effect, though this would seem logical if it is true. I'm also unaware of anything that can be done to minimize floaters whether aging is a factor or not. They generally tend to be somewhat intermittent, so shouldn't be a full-time problem for most people.

As for your question regarding the floaters settling, I am of the impression this happens anyway, at least intermittently.

Given that this is not my area of expertise, I will refer your question to the opthamology team here to see if anyone has anything useful to add regarding this, since I know this is an issue and a major aggravation for a lot of people and any new light would probably be appreciated by many readers (as well as certain staff).

Please check back here in a day or two to see if there's anything addtional to be learned. Good luck to you.
 Dr. Ramamurthy M G - Wed May 20, 2009 9:20 pm

Hi,floaters are common in an aging eye say after 40-45 yrs of age group. It is because of the vitreous degeneration which is a gelly within the eye. The gel becomes sol and the floaters start. They can be few or many more. They can be very frequent and can stabilize or keep on increasing. They can be of any shape like a dot, thread, mosquito, fly, cobwebs etc, depending on the debris within the vitreous. Myopes are more prone especially high myopes. For few floaters normally no treatment is advised, since other than the nuisance they don't cause any problem, but if they are very much surgical procedures can be tried, which is rarely done. Over a period of time we develop the habit of negligence of the disturbance and that is the best line of treatmemt. Regards,
Dr Ramamurthy M G

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