Retinal Detachment

Thus far, Zhaoqi Guo has treated four patients who were suffering from detached retinas and in each case he was successful in restoring perfect vision.

Retinal detachment is an eye disorder where the retina peels away from support tissue. Without swift treatment, the entire retina can be affected and result in loss of vision or blindness. Treating retinal detachment is a medical emergency.

The retina is the very thin layer of light-sensitive tissue located on the back wall of the eye. Injury or trauma to the eye or head or detachment may result in a small tear in the retina. This tear permits fluid to build up under the retina and pressure pushes it away from the back wall.

Fortunately, the risk in normal eyes is low – five in every 100,000 people a year. It is more frequent in the middle-aged and elderly – 20 in every 100,000.

People with severe myopia are more prone to retinal detachment and myopia accounts for about 65% of all cases. Detachment also happens more often after surgery for cataracts and with patients who suffer from diabetes.

Retinal detachment usually occurs in one eye but there is a 15% chance of it happening in both eyes.

The symptoms of retinal detachment are:

  1. Flashes of light in the outside portion of vision.
  2. A sudden and dramatic rise in the number of floaters.
  3. A ring of floaters or hairs to the temporal side of central vision.
  4. Feelings of heaviness in the eye or eyes.
  5. Dense shadows begin in peripheral vision and work their way towards central vision.
  6. Sufferers have the sensation that a dark curtain is drawn over the field of vision. One patient likened it to a roll-top desk closing slowly.
  7. Straight lines appear curved.
  8. There is loss of central vision.

Western medicine’s treatment in some cases is for an eye surgeon to sew silicone bands to close the break or reduce the fluid flow. This allows the retina to re-attach. Other procedures to seal all retinal breaks involve lasers or freezing or inserting a gas bubble under local anaesthesia. Patients have to keep their head tilted for several days to keep the gas bubble in contact with the retinal hole.

Statistics reveal that painful western medicine treatment is successful in 85% of all cases. Vision is gradually restored after a few weeks although it may not be as sharp as it was prior to detachment.

If left untreated, total blindness may occur in just a few days.

Activities to be avoided are boxing, kickboxing, karate, bungee jumping, drag racing or any pursuits that involve sudden acceleration or deceleration that increase eye pressure.

Zhaoqi Guo has high hopes for acupuncture as a painless, surgery-free tool for treating retinal detachment and he shall monitor the progress of the four cases he has treated very carefully.