Posterior vitreous detachment. How to approach sudden-onset floaters and flashing lights

Postgrad Med. 2005 Mar;117(3):37-42. doi: 10.3810/pgm.2005.03.1599.


Symptomatic PVD is a common age-related problem that in some patients is associated with retinal tear and retinal detachment. Thorough ocular examination of patients with unilateral floaters and photopsias is needed to identify those at greatest risk for vision loss. Patients without retinal pathologic findings on initial examination need to be given careful instructions on what to expect and do should symptoms of retinal tear or detachment occur.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Blindness / prevention & control
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Hallucinations / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Physical Examination
  • Prognosis
  • Retinal Detachment / prevention & control
  • Retinal Perforations / etiology
  • Retinal Perforations / prevention & control
  • Vision, Entoptic / physiology*
  • Vitreous Detachment / complications
  • Vitreous Detachment / diagnosis*
  • Vitreous Detachment / physiopathology
  • Vitreous Detachment / therapy*