Retinal Vascular Disease Overview

Retinal Vascular Diseases

Introduction ¹

The retina consists of 10 layers including inner and outer limiting membranes, neuronal layer, rods and cones; these layers require a continuous blood supply and nutrients in order to function optimally. The vascular system of the retina consists of arteries, capillaries and veins. Blockage of any of these blood vessels results in retinal vascular disease or retinal vascular occlusion.

A growth factor named vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF-A) controls angiogenesis – the growth of new blood vessels; that is thought to be implicated in retinal vascular disease. In the presence of systemic diseases such as diabetes and atherosclerosis, the retinal blood vessels can undergo a variety of changes.

 

Types ²

 

 

 

Causes of Retinal Vascular Disease ¹

 

Diagnosis ²

Early diagnosis and management are critcal to prevent permanent damage to vision due to the potentially rapidly progressive nature of retinal vascular disease.  Depending on the presentation there are multiple tests that may be performed:

Treatment ³

Treatment of retinal vascular disease has improved in recent times due to the development and use of anti-VEGF medications. The reversibility of vision depends upon the stage and time of presentation. A patient-centered approach is critical.

Complications

Uncontrolled systemic disease and late presentation can result in severe or permanent loss of vision. The following complications may occur in retinal vascular disease:

 

 

If you have not already, make sure to contact your eye care specialists at Eye Surgeons Associates for a complete dilated exam soon!

References

1- Retinal Vascular Disorder - an overview | ScienceDirect Topics. (n.d.). Sciencedirect.Com. Retrieved October 10, 2021, from https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/retinal-vascular-disorder

2- Gabbey, A. E. (2017, April 11). Retinal Vascular Occlusion. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/retinal-artery-occlusion

3- Management of retinal vascular diseases: a patient-centric approach. (2012, April 1). PubMed Central (PMC). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3335302/

Author
Eye Surgeons Associates Drs. Meiraj A. Siddiqui, Zuhair H. Peracha, Manal H. Peracha-Riyaz, Eric Zuckerman and Leila Siblani are dedicated to excellence in eye care and service. We utilize the latest treatment methods and procedures, including routine eye care, cataract surgery, glaucoma treatment, retinal disease management, diabetic eye treatment, and eyelid surgery.

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