A macular hole is a condition that affects the very central portion of the retina. A macular hole may occur for a number of reasons—most commonly, the normal aging process. As we age, the Vitreous gel in the back of our eye becomes more liquefied and often results in a Vitreous Detachment with associated floaters. Sometimes, when the Vitreous “pulls,’ it can actually form a macular hole.
At first a macular hole may only cause a small blurry or distorted area in the center of vision. As the hole grows over several weeks or months, central vision progressively worsens. Peripheral vision is not affected, and there is low risk of complete blindness.
While some macular holes resolve on their own, in most cases surgery is required to effectively restore vision. An outpatient procedure, known as a vitrectomy, is performed to replace the vitreous gel. A gas bubble is then injected into the eye to help close the hole. As the eye heals, the fluid is naturally replaced.