Lattice retinal degeneration is considered the most significant peripheral retinal disorder potentially predisposing to retinal breaks and retinal detachment. Lattice degeneration affects the vitreous and inner retinal layers with secondary changes as deep as the retinal pigment epithelium and perhaps the choriocapillaris. Variations in clinical appearance are the rule; geographically, lattice lesions favor the vertical meridians between the equator and the ora serrata. Lattice degeneration begins early in life and has been reported in sequential generations of the same family. Along with its customary bilateral occurrence, lattice shares other characteristics of a dystrophy. The association between the vitreous and retina in lattice lesions may be responsible for the majority of lattice-induced retinal detachments. The tumultuous event of posterior vitreous separation in the presence of abnormally strong vitreoretinal adherence is the trigger for a retinal tear that, in turn, may lead to retinal detachment. Although retinal holes in young patients with lattice degeneration may play a role in the evolution of retinal detachment, the clinical course of lattice degeneration seems to be one of dormancy rather than of progressive change. This discussion outlines the pathophysiology of lattice retinal degeneration and the relationship of pathophysiology to clinical presentation. The epidemiology of lattice degeneration is summarized, as are the possible precursors to retinal detachment. A clinical characterization of the natural history of lattice degeneration is offered, and interventions for complications are described. To conclude, management strategies from a primary-care standpoint are reviewed.