New Member
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎01-18-2021

I had retina detachment surgery in September 2020.  A gas bubble was injected and recovery was fairly straightforward at first with bubble becoming smaller, then my vision began to worsen and I feared a redetachment.  A follow-up appt confirmed my fears and I was scheduled for a second surgery in October (about a month after the first surgery).  This time a silicone gel was inserted.  


At the time I believed the gel would be removed in due time and my vision largely restored.  Three subsequent doctor appts have left me doubtful of a return to good vision.  I am told the gel will stay in indefinitely and may need to occasionally be changed.


Also, doctor remarks such as "Well, you can see better now, can't you" have left me in a state of limbo.  Any suggestions, advice or comments would be greatly appreciated.


Thank you and good luck to all my fellow suffers.T


Steve from Georgia

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 132
Registered: ‎12-15-2020

I don't have any suggestions except to see another doctor outside of that practice (maybe associated with a medical school?), but I will pray for your vision to be restored.  I just wanted you to know I read your post and hear your fears.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 13,744
Registered: ‎10-25-2010

I never had a detached retina, but I did have a tear.  It was no picnic. I was told the retina in my other eye will probably tear as well....I am waiting, but praying  that won't happen.


I have a friend who had a detached retina and like you he had touch and go vision with complications for a while.  That was three years ago, and he is doing well and his eyesight is okay, not perfect, but okay.


I wish you the best and speedy recovery.

Super Contributor
Posts: 480
Registered: ‎09-05-2013

I, too, would encourage you to find another doctor for a second opinion.  Perhaps you have a premier medical facility in your area?  Or as another poster suggested, someone associated with a medical school -- even if you have to travel.  

I remember when I was in high school (1950's) my mother had a detached retina and she had surgery.  She was in the hospital a month but the surgery was a success.  

Good luck to you and a really hope you can find a physician who can help.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 49,923
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

You should be seeing a retina your doctor one?  My mom suffered a detached retina some years before her death and she always saw a doctor who was a specialist. 

New Mexico☀️Land Of Enchantment
Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,263
Registered: ‎03-14-2010

Another poster has had a long recovery from this same surgery.  Perhaps she can offer you some words of wisdom.

@RinaRina is who I think it is.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,500
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

I had a detached retina a couple years ago.  I  was referred to a retina specialist in another city and had surgery.  I understand what you're going thru, even tho my problems were very different.  My gas bubble dissolved totally after 2 1/2 months.  But after the retina was re-attached with surgery, I have a 'wrinkle' in my retina that creates a small blind spot with continuing eye discomfort off and on.  I see my retina surgeon and my usual opthamologist every few months.  Both have told me that my 'wrinkle' may flatten and give me normal vision over time -- or my vision could get worse.  Nobody knows - it's up to Mother Nature.  And, of course, I keep getting older.


Most people sail thru retina surgery with no problems at all.  Some of us don't.  All I know is that I never want to go thru that surgery again ever!  I still have nightmares about it.


Where's @BirkiLady ?  I thank her for supporting me thru my after-surgery healing.

* A woman is like a tea bag. You can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water. *
- Eleanor Roosevelt
Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,304
Registered: ‎03-09-2010
I have had two detached retinas in same eye. First one was followed by macular hole and cataract surgery. Eight months after stated surgeries I had first detachment. Then 10 months later second detachment. I had a gas bubble inserted for all three surgeries, took about a month to totally dissolve. The gas bubble requires the head be kept down (for me it was 50 minutes on hour, the time can vary by doctor). I am aware there is a more permanent type bubble that can be used that does not require the head to be kept down but does require surgical removal. Insurance has to approve the surgical removal one before it is used because requires second surgery. Anyway, because of my macular hole, my vision is distorted. I can see and vision is clear but still distorted. I knew there would not be a 100% surgical cure before surgery and signed papers stating such. Still am not sorry I had that surgery because vision would have been worse without it and hole may have gotten worse. If I make it to this Spring, my doctor says statistics prove that it will not likely detach again. I have talked to patients in my doctors waiting room who have had three or more detachments in same eye. My retina doctor always tells me to never give up hope as it takes a long time after this surgery for the cells to make a connection to the brain. If you are not comfortable with your state of being then by all means seek a second opinion of another retina specialist.
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,365
Registered: ‎02-22-2015

Re: Detached retina

[ Edited ]

@RSAKKA  I had retina surgery on 1/07/2020. Like others have mentioned, my Opthomologist sent me to a retina surgeon. He was excellent and specialized in such surgeries.

In my return visits, other patients mentioned stories just like other posters have mentioned above. Thus, I'm convinced any eye surgery is problematic but certainly an option worth taking. As a result, my surgeon told me it could be as long as a year for my eye to heal completely. I have recently had my follow-up appointment and he wants to see me again in April. He agrees that eye didn't come through as well as expected. I'm happy to have any eyesight!

Like another poster I have had "ripples" on my  retina for many years and he continues to watch them. So far, no invasive surgery is warranted at my age (72).  At this point, I doubt I'd go for it. I'd do the retina surgery on the other eye, if necessary, but this eye isn't worth further surgery IMO. 

As far as the retina surgery itself, it was a piece of cake! Easiest surgery I've ever had; no pain; I walked out to my son's truck (no dizziness or problems with the sun), and decided I wanted to be home alone to recover. Sleeping with my head down for that first week all the time was awkward, but it was doable. It's funny now how I complained about it at the time! 

I'd recommend the surgery to anyone. It literally saved my eyesight; I had a hole in my retina as well and vision was compromised. I'm able to see again (not as well), but so grateful for that. 


ETA: Remember, NO flying or trips to the mountain for a year following retina surgery! 


ETA #2: It seems both my Opthomologist and retina surgeon felt there may be a connection between cataract surgeries and later retina problems. I had had cataract surgeries seven years on one eye (no problems) and two years prior with the resulting retina problems. It's interesting to talk to other patients, as well. At the time, I didn't know anyone else who had gone through retina surgery and received some answers on this Board. 


@tototwo Thanks for putting my name out there. I've not been checking here much in 2021. This was a good question and it's a surgery that seems to becoming more and more necessary.  Hope you are doing well. Smiley Wink    

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 79
Registered: ‎04-15-2010

I had my first retina detachment in 2014 after surgery to get rid of floaters. It detached three more times in the next four months. Always ir was emergency surgery and air bubbles inserted. My air bubbles alsway dissipated faster than the doctor wanted. Within two weeks.

The last surgery silicone oil was inserted. I now have virtually no vision in that eye. I can see bits of light, maybe. After seven years of being blind in one eye, I still find that depth perception is a challenge. Usually with curbs or stairs that I am not familiar with. I will pray for you to have a better recovery and outcome than I experienced.