Floaters & Flashers

Although most flashes and floaters occur in people with healthy or merely nearsighted eyes, they may be symptoms of a serious problem, such as a retinal tear or retinal detachment. Flashes in vision are caused by stimulation of the retina. The cause of the flashes can only be determined by a careful dilated examination of the retina.

Floaters are often seen when fibers or condensations move within the vitreous humor, the gelatinous substance made of water and protein fibers that fills the eye. Floaters may also arise when bleeding occurs within the vitreous cavity, which often occurs with a retinal tear. As with flashes, the cause of floaters can only be reliably determined by a careful dilated eye examination. Patients experiencing flashes and floaters should contact their ophthalmologist immediately so an examination can be performed.