Macular holes are a rare eye condition that affect about eight out of every 100,000 people. But before we talk about macular holes, let’s discuss what a macula is. The macula is part of the retina, and it is essential to our central vision and color vision. Additionally, the macula is how our eyes focus in to see details in objects. Without a macula in each eye, we wouldn’t be able to see.
That being said, a macular hole is quite literally a hole that develops on the macula, due to a separation of nerve cells. Macular holes often develop with age and can result in blurred and distorted vision. Without treatment, a macular hole can result in loss of vision in the affected eye.
The good news is that macular holes can be treated. Sometimes, macular holes even resolve without treatment. For cases that do require intervention, the most common surgery is a vitrectomy. During this procedure, the naturally-occurring vitreous gel in the eye is replaced with a bubble consisting of a gas and air mixture. This bubble can hold the macula in place, acting as a temporary bandage during healing. Once a macular hole has healed, the chances of it coming back in the same eye is low. However, there is a 10-15% chance of developing a macular hole in the other eye.
Learn more about macular holes, including symptoms and treatment options. If you live in Austin and suspect you are developing a macular hole, contact our office today. We’ll schedule an appointment to evaluate your eyes and pursue treatment if necessary. Our ophthalmologists are experienced in treating macular holes so that you can enjoy your vision for as long as possible.