The Diagnosis and Treatment of Lattice Degeneration

Sep 14, 2016 @ 09:44 AM — by Retina Associates, P.A.

A female patient smiling, her eyes wide and bright after treatment for lattice degenerationAt Retina Associates, our team of experts provides diagnosis of and treatment for the full range of diseases of the retina, macula, and vitreous. One of the most common retinal conditions that we encounter at our practice is lattice degeneration. Lattice degeneration is an eye disease that affects approximately 10 percent of the American population, although many people who have the condition are not aware that they are affected. This is because, in many cases, the disease does not produce any symptoms, in which case it probably does not require any treatment, either.

However, in cases in which lattice degeneration does produce symptoms, diagnosis should be sought immediately. Once our retinal specialists have diagnosed lattice degeneration at our Shawnee Mission, KS practice, they can determine whether the condition requires treatment. In most cases, it does not. In some cases, however, lattice degeneration can point to a serious problem with the retina, such as a retinal tear. Patients with retinal tears may require treatment to help prevent retinal detachment and permanent loss of vision.

We invite you to read the following information about lattice detachment. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms associated with the condition, we urge you to schedule an appointment at Retina Associates immediately.

What Is Lattice Degeneration?

Lattice degeneration is a condition in which the peripheral retina responsible for a person’s side vision becomes weak and thin. It can occur in a single eye or in both eyes. It most commonly occurs in people who are nearsighted and tends to run in families. The cause of lattice degeneration is not known. In the vast majority of instances, lattice degeneration does not interfere with vision or pose a serious threat to the health of the eye. While people with lattice degeneration are at higher risk of developing retinal detachment than those without the condition, their risk is still relatively low, at around 1 percent.

What Are the Symptoms of Lattice Degeneration?

In general, lattice degeneration does not produce any symptoms, which is why most people with the disease are unaware that they have it. Unfortunately, people who experience symptoms related to their lattice degeneration have already suffered at least some complications due to the condition, most commonly retinal holes or tears. At this point, the most common symptoms include:

  • The sudden appearance of new floaters, usually in a cluster
  • Frequent flashes of light
  • Loss of side vision

Again, if you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important that you seek diagnosis right away.

Even if holes are identified, immediate treatment may not be necessary. Observation may be advised in the short term. If treatment is recommended, the goal will be to seal the lattice degeneration and retinal holes using a laser. This can help to reduce the risk of retinal detachment.

Learn More about Lattice Degeneration

If you would like to learn more about lattice degeneration, or you want to schedule your initial appointment with one of our retinal specialists, please contact Retina Associates today.

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