The macula is the central part of the retina in the eye. It is the only part of the retina that is capable of sharp, detailed vision for tasks such as reading, driving, and watching TV.
A macular hole is a disruption of the center of the macula. The interior of the eye is filled with a jelly-like substance called vitreous. As humans age, this jelly begins to shrink and travel towards the front of the eye. Deterioration of this jelly causes it to pull on the macula. In most cases, the vitreous separates without any negative side effects.
However, in some cases where the vitreous is firmly attached to the central area of the retina, this pulling away may form a small hole, known as a macular hole.
According to the Gass Classification System, macular holes can be classified into four stages:
It may rarely be an incidental finding. Symptoms appear gradually over days/weeks:
Macular holes usually occur in middle aged and older people. They are more common in women than men. People who are very nearsighted, or those who have had blunt injuries to their eyes, may also develop a macular hole. If you fall into the risk group and are experiencing symptoms mentioned heure, see your optometrist immediately.
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