Retinal Problems: An Interview with Retina Specialists

Retinal Problems: An Interview with Retina Specialists
Eye Care

On the occasion of Retinal Awareness Week, Best Doctor’s team interviewed some of the best retina specialists of the country for our readers. When it comes to retina, people tend to get many problems like diabetic retinopathy, age-related macular degeneration, retinal detachment, retinal vein occlusion, macular hole, macular pucker, postoperative endophthalmitisare, haemorrhages, waterlogging of the retina (macular oedema), and rarely cancer of the retina (retinoblastoma).

The article is good for elderly people, people with diabetes, hypertension and all others who would like to increase their knowledge and need help related to various retinal problems.

Our first question to our retina specialists was who is at risk of getting retinal problems, Dr. Rahul Shroff from Shroff Eye Hospital, Mumbai explained, “Patients with uncontrolled diabetes are at a high risk of getting diabetic retinopathy. The incidence is 25% after 10 years of diabetes and increases to 50% after 20 years of diabetes. In older people above the age of 50 yrs there is a risk of developing age-related macular degeneration and this risk increases in smokers and persons with family history of age-related macular degeneration. Patient with high myopia have a high incidence of developing holes and tears in the retina which can lead to retinal detachment. Patients with uncontrolled hypertension can suffer from retinal vein occlusion.”

“People with short sight (myopia) are more likely to get retinal detachments. People with diabetes can get diabetic retinopathy. People with history of retina problem in family are likely to get retina problems. Elderly people are likely to get age related macular degeneration. People with hypertension, high blood cholesterol and bad health get retinal vein occlusion” added Dr. Vatsal Parikh, Drushti Eye and Retina Centre, Mumbai.

Dr. B.T. Maskati, Maskati Eye Clinic, Mumbai said, “Patients can develop retinal problems at any age. Those with myopia (short sight) have greater chances of peripheral retinal degenerations, which may lead to retinal tears and ultimately retinal detachment”.

The age when people gets it more, “In early childhood, upto the age of 5 years a child can develop retinoblastoma or cancer of the retina. After successful cataract surgery, 3 in 100 patients can develop swelling in the macula (the most sensitive area of the retina) called cystoid macular oedema. The elderly, are more prone to age-related macular degeneration.” as said by Dr. Maskati.

Dr. Shroff added, “In older people above the age of 50 yrs there is a risk of developing age-related macular degeneration and this risk increases in smokers and persons with family history of age-related macular degeneration.”

Dr. Vatsal Parikh also agrees that it happens more in elderly people.

The possible causes of retinal problems are, “Diabetes, high blood pressure, short sightedness, any eye surgeries like cataract operation especially complicated” as per Dr. Parikh.

“Patient who suffer from uncontrolled diabetes, uncontrolled hypertension, high myopia and those who smoke.”, suggested Dr. Shroff and “These are naturally occurring events over which the patient has no control. Diabetics can develop diabetic retinopathy.. chances increase if the diabetes is not well controlled . Also the greater the duration of diabetes, the more the chances.”, added Dr. Maskati.

The Symptoms by which one can understand the existence of retinal problem are, “Flashes of light and floaters. In age-related macular degeneration there is difficulty in reading and recognising peoples faces. The must use the Amsler grid chart daily to monitor if their retinal disorder is progressing.”, as per Dr. Shroff.

“Seeing flashes of floaters , curtain in front of eye seeing crooked or distorted or seeing only part of the object”, as per Dr. Parikh.

“For peripheral retinal conditions, the patient can experience persistent flashes of light, sudden and persistent increase in floaters and drop in peripheral or central vision (the last only if there is a retinal detachment). For macular conditions, the chief symptom is distorted central vision.”, as per Dr. Maskati.

When asked, “How can one prevent to get retinal problems?” – the doctors believe it is good control of a patient’s diabetes and blood pressure that can prevent these problems. Dr. Shroff added that even quitting smoking helps and people with high myopia should avoid jerky activities like diving can help them prevent getting retinal problems.

Treatment Options:

As per Dr. Maskati, “Treatment options range from giving intra-vitreal injections, to lasers and finally surgery.. it depends on the disease.”.

“Control of health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, lasers , certain injections like avastin , lucentis or steroids like ozurdex and surgery of vitrectomy” as per Dr. Parikh and “Laser photocoagulation is required for 1) diabetic retinopathy to prevent bleeding 2) holes or tears of the retina to prevent retinal detachment” as per Dr. Shroff.

The doctors believe patients with problems like diabetes, hypertension, high myopia and those above 50 yrs of age must have an eye examination atleast once a year.

Special Thanks to:

dr_maskatiDr. B T Maskati Email: Tel : +9122 -23822973 Fax: +91-22-23885822 Web:

Dr. Rahul Shroff
Shroff eye hospital, Bandra : 66921000 ; 26430940 ; 26431006
Shroff eye clinic, Marine drive : 22814077 ; 22811863 ; 22029242
Website : Email : ;  Dr. Vatsal Parikh
Drushti eye and retina centre, 210, 211 Radhe Vallabh chs, French Bridge
Corner Opera House, Mmbai 400004. O2223880505, 02223864191
Website: Email:

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About Rachna Gupta

Digital Marketer, Mumpreneur, Blogger and Business Coach.