Q. I have a very large floater in my eye, and I rubbed it. Is retinal detachment the cause?

Answered by
Dr. Asha Barboza
and medically reviewed by Dr. Sneha Kannan
This is a premium question & answer published on Sep 08, 2020 and last reviewed on: May 08, 2021

Hi doctor,

I have a huge floater in my eye for two days. I was taking a shower last night. My eye was itchy, and I rubbed it. It is a holiday here, and my eye doctor is closed. I am worried. Could I possibly have a detached retina? But I do not want to go to the ER if it is unnecessary. The eye does not hurt, no redness, and no peripheral vision loss, but only this large floater. I had cataract surgery in this same eye two years ago. And I am under medication for hypertension.



Welcome to icliniq.com.

Thanks for writing in. Is the floater a single squiggly line, a ring, or a more oversized shape that is black that obstructs your line of vision? Your correct age is not mentioned and whether you had short-sightedness before cataract surgery. You might have developed something called a PVD (posterior vitreous detachment), where the vitreous attachment to the retina has separated. That can cause a ring-like floater or a line in some cases. If they are multiple dots, then it could be an associated hemorrhage. A retinal detachment will cause a curtain-like shadow in the side vision and profound visual loss if it is in the center. A PVD will require only observation. You can probably wait a day till the ophthalmologist is available, but ultimately it will require a dilated eye exam. As I mentioned, if you have a dark curtain-like shadow, you will need to go in immediately—meanwhile, no heavy weight lifting or strenuous activity. I wish I could have been of more help. Please feel free to ask more questions.

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