Major floater attack -- does this mean anything?

Discussion in 'Optometry Archives' started by jhill524, Aug 11, 2006.

  1. jhill524

    jhill524 Guest

    I'm a 28-year-old nearsighted male, and I've had floaters for as long
    as I can remember. I never found them too annoying; they were just
    little translucent threads (maybe three different shapes) and I never
    really noticed them unless I was really paying attention.

    However, last night I had a terrible floater experience that I can not

    It began as I was lying in bed, looking at the ceiling. The light was
    off, and I noticed a sqiggly, spider-like object that seemed to be
    dangling from the ceiling. At first I wondered if a spider was in the
    room or a bug was flying around, so I swatted at it. Nothing seemed to
    happen, so I got up and turned on the light. There was nothing there.

    I turned the light off and went back to bed, and I soon saw it again.
    I turned my head around, and soon saw something a bit different...a
    giant scribbley mess that seemed to turn and twist around in several
    different ways.

    Later on, I closed my eyes, and instead of the usual black background,
    it was a deep reddish color -- and near the bottom of my field of
    vision was a bunch of black, grass-like threads that swayed back and
    forth, and sometimes bent and quiverred.

    Just when I thought things couldn't get any weirder, I saw in the
    center of my vision, a giant oval-shaped object with a bunch of tiny
    hairs around it -- sort of like a giant paramecium. The hairs wiggled
    and curled just like the grassy stuff had before.

    In the morning when the room was light, I looked at my white wall, and
    saw what appeared to be a shadow of a tree branch. But I soon realized
    that it looked just like the grassy threads I had seen at night...and
    soon afterward, the oval-shaped object returned and seemed to crawl
    along the wall. When I looked at another wall, I saw the same thing.

    Throughout the day, these images gradually became dimmer and dimmer --
    and at the present, they seem to have gone away. But I'm still
    concerned about this experience and what may have happened in my eye to
    spur it on. I NEVER want to see this horrid stuff again.

    Like I said, I've had floaters in the past, but there were differences
    between the former ones and the recent ones:

    - My usual floaters are small and translucent -- these were big, black
    and ugly. They even seemed to be three-dimensional.

    - My usual floaters are seen in daylight, but these I saw most vividly
    in the dark and/or when my eyes were closed, though I could still see
    faint shadows of them with my eyes open.

    I've read about things like vitreous/retinal detachment that can occur
    after an increase of floaters, but I don't seem to have any of the
    other symptoms (no light flashes, and my "normal" floaters haven't

    Still, I want to know if anyone else has experienced something like
    this, and what may have happened in my eyes to cause it. I'd also like
    to know if I should get medical help for this, even if they seem to
    have faded away.

    (And for the record, no, I wasn't on any drugs last night, and I'm
    pretty sure I wasn't dreaming it.)

    jhill524, Aug 11, 2006
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  2. wrote in
    Even if they are floaters, its probaby a good idea, like with any sudden
    change, to bounce this off your eye doctor.
    Scott Seidman, Aug 12, 2006
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  3. jhill524

    jhill524 Guest

    I just called my optometrist. He asked if I had any of the other
    symptoms of detachment (flashing lights, reduced peripheral vision,
    etc.) and I said no. He said that in cases of actual detachment, such
    symptoms would occur and the floaters would persist or get worse. Mine

    He said that it may have just been the result of a minor
    illness/fatigue. I do recall feeling a bit dizzy with a headache that
    night, so that may have contributed. Plus, the fact that I was
    sleeping may have caused by brain to intensify the experience.

    Still, he did say that if anything like that happened in the future, I
    should call him immediately and not wait. I'll remember that.

    jhill524, Aug 12, 2006
  4. jhill524

    Salmon Egg Guest


    I am not a health professional. What you describe sounds like ocular
    migraine. Go to an ophthalmologist or better yet a ophthalmological

    -- Ferme le Bush
    Salmon Egg, Aug 12, 2006
  5. jhill524

    ashlin Guest

    I'm undergoing chelation treatment for toxic heavy metals and read
    that this treatment improves vitreous floaters. You may like to reseach
    or investigate it. here is a starting point.
    ashlin, Aug 12, 2006

  6. You don't wait to see the signs of a retinal detachment as above. That is
    already too late.

    Sudden onset of new floaters, with or without flashes or peripheral vision
    loss, REQUIRES a retinal examination to PREVENT a retinal detachment. If a
    retinal tear is found, it can be treated (laser, cryo) BEFORE it becomes a
    detachment. While it could have been an illness, that is a matter of
    conjecture, and at the bottom of the list relative to eye symptoms.

    I disagree with the optometrist's answer that you did not need a dilated
    exam ASAP. My colleagues all agree and we recommend the exam within 48 hrs.
    max after onset of symptoms.

    David Robins, MD
    Board certified Ophthalmologist
    Pediatric ophthalmology and adult strabismus subspecialty
    David Robins, MD, Aug 12, 2006
  7. Visua; migraine symptoms do not generally have formed objects. They are
    usually flashes, colored flashes, and zig-zag neon-like lines, and scotomas
    (absences of vision).

    The description given is really what you see with floaters.

    Going to a neuro-ophtalmologist for new visual symptoms, in any case, is
    tremendous overkill unless the ophthalmologist can't figure it out.
    David Robins, MD, Aug 12, 2006
  8. jhill524

    jhill524 Guest

    I'm starting to wonder if they really were floaters. The common
    definition I've seen is that they appear usually in light -- these were
    actually seen most clearly in the dark, or when my eyes were closed.
    They didn't float in the same way as my "daytime" floaters do (and I
    haven't seen any increase in my "daytime" floaters.)

    I actually was very tired and stressed out that night. I hadn't slept
    in a long time and I had been working long doctor seemed to
    think that's what brought it on.

    jhill524, Aug 12, 2006
  9. jhill524

    retinula Guest

    you should quit reasoning and rationalizing about this situation and
    get a dilated fundus exam. sudden-onset of floaters can be a serious
    problem. it may not be but it could be a vision-threatening problem.
    just get your eyes checked (with dilation) immediately. what do you
    have to lose? you are playing with fire!

    retinula, Aug 12, 2006
  10. jhill524

    Salmon Egg Guest

    To me, the zig-zag lines did have some resemblance to floaters. It is very
    difficult to tell what a person actually sees by the descriptions usually

    -- Ferme le Bush
    Salmon Egg, Aug 13, 2006
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