Floaters Only Vitrectomy

Posted by susan2018 @susan2018, Mar 6, 2019

I am wondering if anyone has had an FOV, Floaters Only Vitrectomy, and would be willing to share their experiences. For at least two years I was plagued with the constant irritating presence of gauzy, wispy, moving clumps that would obscure my vision and make reading and driving a tiring challenge. Prior to this I had had cataract surgery and a lens exchange surgery. Many, many follow up appointments and a second opinion did not pinpoint a reason for my continuing complaints. Although I did not complain of dry eyes, I was led to believe that was my issue and was treated with Xiidra and then Restasis and then even both at the same time, with no improvement in my symptoms. Finally a follow up appointment with a new ophthalmologist in the practice and my description of what I was seeing led to a diagnosis of a degenerating vitreous and a referral to a vitreal surgeon. Last week I had a vitrectomy to remove the vitreous. Despite the after effects of the surgery, the next day when the eye patch and bandages came off, I could immediately tell that my vision in that eye had cleared. It has been such a relief! I am hoping my recovery is uneventful and am now anticipating following up with the surgeon to schedule the procedure on my other eye. Has anyone experienced a situation similar to mine? Why would my problem not be recognized and diagnosed sooner? I have wondered if I simply was not able to describe my symptoms well enough or if ophthalmologists tend not to recognize or acknowledge how debilitating the condition can be. I understand that over time and with age the vitreous does degenerate for all people. Do only a few people experience what I did during that process or are there many people experiencing it’s deleterious effects on their vision and are just living with it, or as in my case, are not able to get a diagnosis from their eye care providers? I should add that I am in my early 70s and was extremely nearsighted my entire life. Anyone out there experience what I did?

Hi Susan and others who responded – I am dying to know who you saw for this surgery. I have been working with a team at Mass Eye and Ear who really don't want to do a Vitrectomy, and are talking in stark terms about how dangerous it is. Meantime, I am sooooo unhappy with my vision and it is eating at me day and night. Can you share who your docs are and where they are found?

Paul L.

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@paulloefstedt

Hi Susan and others who responded – I am dying to know who you saw for this surgery. I have been working with a team at Mass Eye and Ear who really don't want to do a Vitrectomy, and are talking in stark terms about how dangerous it is. Meantime, I am sooooo unhappy with my vision and it is eating at me day and night. Can you share who your docs are and where they are found?

Paul L.

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I want to be clear that I can only report my own experience with vitrectomy for floaters and make no recommendations to anyone as to what is appropriate for them. I am sure patient age, eye condition, and symptoms as well as surgeons’ experiences are major factors in decisions relating to surgery. That said, I just had my final follow up with my surgeon after my second eye was done. (Surgeon Dr Robert Mittra of VitreoRetinal Surgery with a number of offices throughout Minnesota) My surgery was in Edina MN, a suburb of Mpls. As I said before, my vision was dramatically improved the day after surgery, even with the gas bubble obscuring part of the visual field. My first eye done, my distance vision eye, is now perfectly clear. With this second eye, my near vision eye, I am left with what looks like a small tissue fragment, sometimes visible and moving when it is, appearing translucent and looking a bit like part of a gossamer dragonfly wing and sometimes appearing as a dark spot. I am told this may disappear in time and also that it is not visible to the surgeon. For me this is a minor issue and easily ignored when it appears. I am so grateful that my struggles with trying to see through the degenerating vitreous are over. It was an every minute of the day effort trying to clear my vision. And don’t even talk about driving! I wonder if the difficulty in getting this diagnosed and treated is that it relies on subjective data, patient reporting. And when we repeatedly complain and get frustrated trying to explain the problems we’re experiencing, we can tend to be thought of as a difficult and maybe even emotional patient. I think ophthalmologists need to do a better job of asking questions that help them with the diagnosis because it is truly difficult to describe. I was extremely nearsighted and wonder If you are because I understand that can be a contributing factor. I will check back to see how you are doing.

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I had the surgery less than a week ago. My vision above the bubble is amazing. I have not seen clear in ages just like most of you in these posts. Right now I have gone from a black line across my vision (like being half under water) to a smaller bubble with a new tiny bubble to the side. Has anyone developed a second little bubble? So far if the bubbles resolve I would highly recommend this. No more grey cotton masses floating in my vision and settling in my direct line of sight.

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This is what I am seeing now, post surgery with a second bubble,

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@dragl1959

I had the surgery less than a week ago. My vision above the bubble is amazing. I have not seen clear in ages just like most of you in these posts. Right now I have gone from a black line across my vision (like being half under water) to a smaller bubble with a new tiny bubble to the side. Has anyone developed a second little bubble? So far if the bubbles resolve I would highly recommend this. No more grey cotton masses floating in my vision and settling in my direct line of sight.

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Ain’t it amazing??!! Yes the big bubble breaks up into many little ones. Thus surgery is amazing. You’ll be so happy

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@susan2018

Ain’t it amazing??!! Yes the big bubble breaks up into many little ones. Thus surgery is amazing. You’ll be so happy

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Thank you. I was concerned that was not normal. My vision, not counting the bubble, is already so worth the procedure. Glad this is normal healing.

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@dragl1959 you’ll have many tiny bubbles darting about as the big one breaks down, and eventually they will dissipate. It truly was amazing, the moment they took the eye patch off the morning after surgery and despite the big bubble, to see clearly instead of seeing the world through what looked like a microscope slide of pond water. Best of luck.

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@susan2018

@dragl1959 you’ll have many tiny bubbles darting about as the big one breaks down, and eventually they will dissipate. It truly was amazing, the moment they took the eye patch off the morning after surgery and despite the big bubble, to see clearly instead of seeing the world through what looked like a microscope slide of pond water. Best of luck.

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Thank you. It is truly amazing. Now I need to not notice the floaters in the other eye! I think that one will settle down hopefully. I haven't seen clearly for almost 2 years.

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Susan, et al. My ophthalmologist called my floaters, “vitreous debris”. He stressed that surgery is dangerous and he didn’t recommend it! It never dropped
like he thought it would. The football shaped debris never dropped and blocks two letters of every word I read. It’s in the left eye and so annoying! I don’t
know how the “bubble” works to eradicate the vitreous debris. Is there any other method to remove or move it or cause it to drop below my sight line. Moo1

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@moo1

Susan, et al. My ophthalmologist called my floaters, “vitreous debris”. He stressed that surgery is dangerous and he didn’t recommend it! It never dropped
like he thought it would. The football shaped debris never dropped and blocks two letters of every word I read. It’s in the left eye and so annoying! I don’t
know how the “bubble” works to eradicate the vitreous debris. Is there any other method to remove or move it or cause it to drop below my sight line. Moo1

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I went to a specialist that has done many of these. It was similar to cataract surgery or lassie (I've had both). It was relatively easy, about 10 days of no heavy lifting and using drops. The eye healed great and I can see better than ever! Now I want the other eye done. I had no idea just how bad it had gotten. I have struggled for years.

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@dragl1959

I went to a specialist that has done many of these. It was similar to cataract surgery or lassie (I've had both). It was relatively easy, about 10 days of no heavy lifting and using drops. The eye healed great and I can see better than ever! Now I want the other eye done. I had no idea just how bad it had gotten. I have struggled for years.

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The bubble is seen as the eye is filling back up with tears, the gas that has replaced the old dirty vitreous, slowly dissipates. It last about a week to two. So worth it.

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@moo1

Susan, et al. My ophthalmologist called my floaters, “vitreous debris”. He stressed that surgery is dangerous and he didn’t recommend it! It never dropped
like he thought it would. The football shaped debris never dropped and blocks two letters of every word I read. It’s in the left eye and so annoying! I don’t
know how the “bubble” works to eradicate the vitreous debris. Is there any other method to remove or move it or cause it to drop below my sight line. Moo1

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How long has it been since your surgery? It took awhile but my one piece of debris in one eye has settled. It does occasionally pop up and is irritating but then disappears again. It is a good reminder of his bad things were before the surgery.

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