Retinal detachment is a very serious eye condition that happens when the retina separates from the tissue around it. Since the retina can't work properly under these conditions, you could permanently lose vision if the detached retina isn't repaired promptly.
Each war leaves its own brand of trauma on soldiers.
Amputation was the most common surgery during the American Civil War. World War I brought mustard gas and an epidemic of scarred lungs.
For veterans returning from war in Iraq and Afghanistan, vision problems caused by traumatic brain injury are a growing concern. These veterans have better body armor than soldiers in the past, but they are more likely to be severely shaken by a blast from a homemade explosive device.
About 16% of soldiers...
Retinal tears -- although different than retinal detachment -- are often the first stage leading to a retinal detachment. If fluid from within the eye passes through a retinal tear, that can separate the retina from its underlying tissue -- and that's retinal detachment. Retinal detachment may happen with no warning, but often there are retinal tear “warning” symptoms of flashes and floaters. If treated during the stage of retinal tear and before full detachment, a simple office laser procedure prevents the need for a more serious retinal detachment operation.
If you are unsure about your risk of retinal detachment, talk to your eye doctor.
What Are the Symptoms of a Detached Retina?
A detached retina doesn't hurt, so look for these symptoms: