Total retinal detachment digital illustration

Total retinal detachment Save

ICD-10 code: H33.05

Chapter: Diseases of the eye and adnexia

Total Retinal Detachment: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Total retinal detachment is a serious eye condition that can cause permanent vision loss if not treated promptly. It occurs when the retina, the light-sensitive layer at the back of the eye, becomes detached from the underlying tissue that nourishes it. This can happen due to a variety of causes, including trauma, diabetes, and age-related changes.

Causes of Total Retinal Detachment

There are several factors that can contribute to total retinal detachment, including:

  1. Trauma to the eye, such as a blow or puncture wound
  2. Diabetes, which can cause abnormal blood vessels to form in the retina
  3. Age-related changes that cause the vitreous, the gel-like substance that fills the eye, to shrink and pull away from the retina
  4. Eye surgery, such as cataract surgery or a vitrectomy
  5. Genetic factors
Symptoms of Total Retinal Detachment

The symptoms of total retinal detachment can vary depending on the severity of the detachment. Some common symptoms include:

  • Sudden onset of floaters or flashes of light
  • A curtain-like shadow across the field of vision
  • Blurred or distorted vision
  • Loss of peripheral vision
Treatment for Total Retinal Detachment

Immediate treatment is necessary for total retinal detachment to prevent permanent vision loss. The most common treatment is surgery, which involves reattaching the retina to the underlying tissue. There are several surgical techniques that can be used, depending on the severity and location of the detachment.

In some cases, laser therapy or cryotherapy may be used to seal small retinal tears or holes before a detachment occurs. It is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible if you experience any symptoms of total retinal detachment.


Total retinal detachment is a serious eye condition that requires prompt treatment to prevent permanent vision loss. If you experience any symptoms of total retinal detachment, seek medical attention immediately. With early diagnosis and treatment, the chances of a successful outcome are greatly increased.