A retinal vein occlusion is an event in which a vein in your eye becomes blocked, preventing oxygen and nutrients from reaching the nerves in your retina. There are two main types of retinal vein occlusions: a branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO), which affects smaller veins in the retina; and a central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO), which affects the retina’s primary vein.
Because BRVO occurs as a result of clotting in the veins, general risk factors for blood clotting also apply to BRVO. These common risk factors include:
BRVO generally does not cause pain; the primary symptom is sudden vision loss that can occur anywhere in the eye. In fact, some patients do not realize they have BRVO because the affected area is not in the center of the eye. In these cases, floaters can also be a telltale sign of BRVO.
Most patients with BRVO have an excellent prognosis for recovery, and some who have experienced no vision loss may not require treatment at all. At Infinity Retina, we always recommend that our patients first address any underlying conditions or factors that could be contributing to BRVO. This includes:
Anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) injections performed by Dr. Parvus can also help treat BRVO. In more difficult cases, Dr. Parvus may prescribe laser therapy along with VEGF medication, which involves a grid of light laser pulses being applied to the macula.
Each patient is unique, and Dr. Parvus will work directly with you to determine the treatment plan that suits your needs best.
As previously stated, central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO) is a condition that affects the primary vein in your retina. When this vessel swells and closes off, nutrients and oxygen cannot travel to the retina, causing blurry vision and other symptoms in your eye. CRVO usually occurs only in one eye.
While the exact cause of central retinal vein occlusion is unknown, researchers have identified high blood pressure and diabetes as strong risk factors for the condition. This is because CRVO develops from a blood clot, and these conditions seriously increase your risk of clotting.
The two types of central retinal vein occlusion we see at Infinity Retina are as follows:
Regardless of which type is affecting you, it’s important to detect central retinal vein occlusion symptoms like abnormal vessels and macular edema early to prevent severe vision loss before it begins.
All cases of central retinal vein occlusion should be closely monitored by your ophthalmologist at Infinity Retina, but about ⅓ of patients with central retinal vein occlusion improve on their own. If your CRVO comes and goes or continues to worsen, anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) injections performed periodically by Dr. Parvus can reduce swelling and improve symptoms.
If you are at a high risk for blood clots, it’s important to be aware of how retinal vein occlusion can damage your vision.
At Infinity Retina, Dr. Britt J. Parvus has the specialized experience to help you prevent and manage the symptoms of retinal vein occlusion. Using her personalized approach, Dr. Parvus will work directly with you to develop a treatment plan in which you are comfortable and confident.
Don’t wait to treat retinal vein occlusion. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Parvus today.