Wondering if anyone has had an FOV, 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?

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Eye Conditions group.

@erikas

@kathyoung You will see that I have moved your question into a discussion where members are currently discussing Vitrectomy, as it relates to Vitreomacular Tractionas. I did this so you could more quickly connect and get support. You will notice members like @susan2018 @bobbyo @ellen307 @dragl1959 have experience with this topic and may be a good resource for you. I also encourage you to scroll back through the comments to find previously shared suggestions.

Below I have linked another previous discussion regarding treatment that you may find informative.
– What was your treatment plan for a vitreous hemorrhage? https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/what-was-your-treatment-plan-for-a-vitreous-hemorrhage/

May I ask if your provider told you it would resolve and if so, how long ago that was?

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Thank you for your reply and for forwarding the appropriate links.

My retina specialist said there was a possibility it would resolve but he wanted to check it in three months,
which is coming up in February. If it is worse he told me it would mean surgery

I had a colon resection in late September (which is how I learned of this site – thank God!), so I am
not looking forward to any more surgery!

Thanks again for your prompt reply. I find this Mayo Clinic site Invaluable!

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@colleenyoung

@Stuckonyou, I believe all of the institutions you named and large university medical centers are the best places to go when you have a condition that remains undiagnosed or unresolved locally. As a major referral center, Mayo Clinic sees many patients who seek a second opinion — and for good reason. In a recent study, Mayo researchers found that as many as 66 percent of these patients have their original diagnosis refined and in 21 percent of cases, changed. See this article: https://www.mayoclinic.org/giving-to-mayo-clinic/philanthropy-in-action/features-stories/the-value-of-a-second-opinion

Mayo Clinic specializes in being able to diagnose where others have failed. Here's more info about Mayo and requesting a second opinion. https://www.mayoclinic.org/answers

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Thank you Colleen! You just informed me about that question I asked you in private messaging.. I'm going to respond future here before reading the links you included. A part of me is hoping that this field, this group, this process has a specific name/identity. I ask Doc F if she ever heard.of such a group, she had not but suggested that I sign back into “ connects “ after being absent far too long but as my vision worsened a question arose for ne if straining to see while typing with one finger was making matters worse. I did miss having my “ connection “. Buddies and a place were
It’s been comfortable to ask and propose ideas.

I will read those links however if you know someone or a specific source for exploring more deeply I will very much appreciate your help. You have been exceptional in your job as a director. Mayo needs a placket with your name and face on it. I would pay homage to it every time I would be at the facility. From me to ALL OF YOU DEDICATED VOLUNTEERS!
You inspire me to do the same thing; to volunteer to help those of u seeking help. I wish I could do more for you and ALL OF YOU. You are The Best Colleen!

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Hi Susan and all,
Once again my vision went from miraculously better to disastrously horrific. When the doctors can't figure things out its very comfortable for them to say things like: “ your vision problems are all in your head “

I often feel like they ( Doctors or other know-it-all's ) hit me between the eyes with a 2×4 and it triggers horrible depression and stress. When I found your post I felt as if “ I am not the only one “ that said the differences between my condition(s) also often lead to a puzzlement about “ the lights “

In a way I feel like I'm back at the beginning of the search for answers but more specifically a doctor ( expert ) who says “ you're not crazy “ you need a full specific work up because as that doctors told me years ago” we know that you have cataracts but we don't know what else you have”
.
The day of my covid shit I was so bad I shouldn't have been driving. 15 minutes after the shot my vision improved so I could at least read signs. The next day it got worse and the day after that I really thought I was going blind.

I called the VA and got brow beat for 15 minutes until I couldn't talk and my ears were ringing.

By accident I spoke with an eye tech who told me that I wasn't losing my mind and she sent me some info.

I can't repost it all here now but I copied JUST ONE OF MANY POSSIBLE DISORDERS””

Here it is:
Entoptic Phenomenon

Entoptic phenomenon is a normal phenomenon that some people may become suddenly aware of. This sudden awareness may lead to the idea that there is a problem with the eyes, when actually there is not. The entoptic phenomenon can be seen especially when looking at a bright blue sky. Small, rapid pin-point sparks of light can be seen darting about in the central vision. Some people may think that these sparks are floaters. In reality, they may represent white blood cells moving through the blood capillaries of the retina. This is a normal finding, and actually indicate normal retinal function..

There are EXACTLY one of the “ LIGHTS” that I see.

I called her back and she asked me to identify and copy and paste them all in an email and send them to her.

Next thing is to find someone who will listen to ALL of these disorders and figure out what is next.

I hope this might help someone

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Reading many of these posts give me hope. I have been struggling with the obstructions in my eyes for 3 years with no help from ophthalmologists. Now I'm looking for a Dr. who isn't afraid to do an FOV. I live in the Tampa, Fl. area, and wondering if any one .has a recommendation.

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@wjflier

Reading many of these posts give me hope. I have been struggling with the obstructions in my eyes for 3 years with no help from ophthalmologists. Now I'm looking for a Dr. who isn't afraid to do an FOV. I live in the Tampa, Fl. area, and wondering if any one .has a recommendation.

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@wjflier Welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect, a place to give and get support.

Three years is a long time to struggle with no treatment. You are wanting to connect with members that may have a suggestion of providers for FOV. Members like @stuckonu @kathyoung @bobbyo @mazeppabob @moo1 have discussed this topic in the past and may have suggestions.

May I ask if you had a chance to read all of the posts in this discussion? There are many pages.

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@moo1

Thank you!

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You need to see a VitreoRetinal Surgeon rather than the ophthalmologists we routinely see.

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@bobbyo

Hi, I’ve been on this thread for a number of months researching and considering my Floaters Only Vitrectomy. I had the procedure done on 12/3/20 and am, initially, pleased with the results and hoping for further improvement in 2021.

Eye floaters are specs, circles, “threads”, blobs..any number of various shapes and sizes (as you mentioned, others have described in this discussion group). As I understand, they are made up of collagen, protein or pieces of the vitreous membrane or other membranes that get stuck in your vitreous humor and obstruct the free-flow of light to your retina. This “debris” stuck within your vitreous humor causes varying degrees of obstruction to your vision and, thereby, has varying effects on quality of vision.

As I, previously, described, I put up with tons of floaters in each eye for most of my life until this year. After my December 2019 cataract surgery and placement of IOL, I got a new floater (or group of floaters) that I’d describe as follows: a wide area of 50-100 small, grouped circles that passed through my main vision field consistently. My retinal surgeon called it a “veil-type” floater(s). Driving got very challenging as the “veil” would go to the left, then right through my main focal point of vision. Surgeon described it as “like a windshield wiper.” It caused me visual confusion and got scary. After reading a lot of this group’s experiences and researching, I decided that my problem lessened my quality of life enough AND the surgery was low enough risk that I’d have it done. Ok, enough on that.

You can look up Floaters and Flashes Animations at various Youtube sites online to see very good representations of what they look like to those afflicted with them. I don’t know how they replicate these animations, but they are very realistic. Sum: Most people have eye floaters, especially when you get to be over 60 years old. Anyone with the problem just has to decide if the floaters are a significant factor in vision degradation and quality of their life in considering sticking with status quo versus getting surgery.

Good luck, Bob

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Hi All, Not sure I’m doing this correctly, but I’m replying here to my own post on January 1, 2021 to continue a journal of my recovery from FOV surgery of 12/3/20.

Update as of today, 2/16/21: Ok, I’m 2 1/2 months out from my surgery and my sight in the operated eye is very similar to what it was just after surgery. I continue to have 5+ smaller floaters but the most the predominant are “spec-size.” They do fly into my field of vision regularly, but can be ignored pretty easily. The key point is that these remaining floaters are NOTHING LIKE my pre-FOV “flag-like”obstruction (my surgeon called it a large “veil” floater). Right now, I rate the success of my surgery at about a 7.5 out of 10. If there were NO floaters remaining, I’d probably rate it a 9 or 10. By the way, the surgeon, as recently as 2 weeks ago, still is saying that he expects the remaining floaters to “settle” so that I end up with -0- I’m not confident that will happen, but I will, surely, let all know if it does.

Other left eye problems: Ever since I had cataract surgery in December 2019, I have “light streaks” when looking at a light either peripherally or upward. I believe it is a positive dysphotopsia that, may well have been caused by the use of square-edged IOL (interocular lens) used in that cataract surgery. I’m dealing with it as the only, possible, remedy for this problem would be replacement of IOL!

A couple other of MY notes/observations:
– local optometrists, generally, don’t seem to be in favor of FOVs (Floaters Only Vitrectomys). However, my Vitreoretinal surgeon told me he’s done hundreds and has been doing, as many as, 1-2 per week recently.
– Check out Dr Jerry Sebag of VMR Institute online for discussion of FOV diagnostic tools and considerations.
– Eye doctors (ophthalmologists and optometrists) do not seem inclined to educate me on my eye problems. Much-used terms I found and researched on-line for the eye anatomy and for eye conditions I have (like “dysphotopsia” – I mentioned above) were not used by my doctors until I asked about them.

All the above are only MY experiences and some opinions, for what they are worth. Hope they are of help to some of you!

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@bobbyo

Hi All, Not sure I’m doing this correctly, but I’m replying here to my own post on January 1, 2021 to continue a journal of my recovery from FOV surgery of 12/3/20.

Update as of today, 2/16/21: Ok, I’m 2 1/2 months out from my surgery and my sight in the operated eye is very similar to what it was just after surgery. I continue to have 5+ smaller floaters but the most the predominant are “spec-size.” They do fly into my field of vision regularly, but can be ignored pretty easily. The key point is that these remaining floaters are NOTHING LIKE my pre-FOV “flag-like”obstruction (my surgeon called it a large “veil” floater). Right now, I rate the success of my surgery at about a 7.5 out of 10. If there were NO floaters remaining, I’d probably rate it a 9 or 10. By the way, the surgeon, as recently as 2 weeks ago, still is saying that he expects the remaining floaters to “settle” so that I end up with -0- I’m not confident that will happen, but I will, surely, let all know if it does.

Other left eye problems: Ever since I had cataract surgery in December 2019, I have “light streaks” when looking at a light either peripherally or upward. I believe it is a positive dysphotopsia that, may well have been caused by the use of square-edged IOL (interocular lens) used in that cataract surgery. I’m dealing with it as the only, possible, remedy for this problem would be replacement of IOL!

A couple other of MY notes/observations:
– local optometrists, generally, don’t seem to be in favor of FOVs (Floaters Only Vitrectomys). However, my Vitreoretinal surgeon told me he’s done hundreds and has been doing, as many as, 1-2 per week recently.
– Check out Dr Jerry Sebag of VMR Institute online for discussion of FOV diagnostic tools and considerations.
– Eye doctors (ophthalmologists and optometrists) do not seem inclined to educate me on my eye problems. Much-used terms I found and researched on-line for the eye anatomy and for eye conditions I have (like “dysphotopsia” – I mentioned above) were not used by my doctors until I asked about them.

All the above are only MY experiences and some opinions, for what they are worth. Hope they are of help to some of you!

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@bobbyo appreciate the update as I'm dealing with floater issues which requires me to see a retina specialist every 3-6 months or as vision changes.

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Good Morning Everyone —

I have been STRUGGLING with floaters in my right eye for about 3-4 months now. I see them inside/outside and especially using a computer. I have visited my eye doctor and a retinal specialist and have been told my eye is healthy and in good shape. My corrected vison is 20/20. The retina specialist told me if it is still bothering me in a month, we can discuss a floater only vitrectomy. Since onset, they have disrupted my life in the most debilitating way.

My question is… Do you think I should wait longer to see if the problem resolves itself before going the surgical route?

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@markymark215

Good Morning Everyone —

I have been STRUGGLING with floaters in my right eye for about 3-4 months now. I see them inside/outside and especially using a computer. I have visited my eye doctor and a retinal specialist and have been told my eye is healthy and in good shape. My corrected vison is 20/20. The retina specialist told me if it is still bothering me in a month, we can discuss a floater only vitrectomy. Since onset, they have disrupted my life in the most debilitating way.

My question is… Do you think I should wait longer to see if the problem resolves itself before going the surgical route?

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@markymark215 I think you’ve been given good advice. From my experience traditional floaters eventually settle down and the eye and brain accommodates. They may sporadically reappear and dash about in your field of vision with your greater awareness, but the trend over months’ time is toward them bothering less. And they look different than what I experienced as the deteriorating vitreous, which became only worse over time, an ever moving phenomenon that obscured my vision. If it were me, 6-12 months would tell the tale. One clue is if you are exhausted by constantly trying to clear your vision. Another is if you have scary moments with vision when driving, then it’s time to do something. Knowing that a Vitrectomy can fix this if need be can allow you to relax about seeing a bunch of floaters and give your brain some time for accommodation if they’re just garden variety floaters.

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@susan2018

@markymark215 I think you’ve been given good advice. From my experience traditional floaters eventually settle down and the eye and brain accommodates. They may sporadically reappear and dash about in your field of vision with your greater awareness, but the trend over months’ time is toward them bothering less. And they look different than what I experienced as the deteriorating vitreous, which became only worse over time, an ever moving phenomenon that obscured my vision. If it were me, 6-12 months would tell the tale. One clue is if you are exhausted by constantly trying to clear your vision. Another is if you have scary moments with vision when driving, then it’s time to do something. Knowing that a Vitrectomy can fix this if need be can allow you to relax about seeing a bunch of floaters and give your brain some time for accommodation if they’re just garden variety floaters.

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Thanks for the reply!

I have a feeling that I will probably have the surgery at some point! I just don’t want to rush into anything!

I must say it is very exhausting trying to get through my day with them. I only have 3-4 just they are huge spanning my entire vision. Meeting with another retina specialist tomorrow!

Also, I’m only 29 years old.

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