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Lattice Retinal Degeneration

Lattice degeneration is a common degenerative change of the peripheral retina tissue. It is seen in about 10% of the general population’s eyes, and if one eye has lattice degeneration there is a 50% chance the fellow eye also has it as well. It is more commonly found in myopic (near-sighted eyes).

Lattice degeneration is a thinning of the retinal tissue, the layer of tissue on the inside of the eye that detects light and senses vision. Additionally, the vitreous, the clear gel filling the space inside the eye, becomes more liquid over that area of retinal thinning. Complications may arise if the retinal tissue thins to the point of developing a retinal tear or detachment.

Symptoms of a retinal tear or detachment are flashing lights in your vision, a sudden increase in floaters, or a curtain/veil coming down over your peripheral vision. If these symptoms develop, notify your eye care specialist as soon as possible for an evaluation. Approximately one third of patients with primary retinal detachments have been reported to also have lattice degeneration.

Patients with lattice degeneration are typically asymptomatic and will not know they have this condition, which is why it is important for routine eye exams with dilation.

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