Retinal Conditions - Lattice Degeneration and Retinal Holes

Sometimes the retina thins in areas where it inserts near the front of the eye.

This thinning is called lattice degeneration and often appears like a band of latticework. Lattice increases the risk of retinal holes, tears, and detachment.

These areas are weaker and more prone to tearing when the vitreous gel pulls or separates from the retina. They are also more susceptible to thinning in focal spots that then cause holes. Depending upon the health of your retina, family history, and symptoms, your retina specialist may recommend protective laser barrier to strengthen the borders of the weak areas and minimize the risk of complications.

Occasionally, the retina develops a retinal hole in areas with or without lattice degeneration as a consequence of the vitreous gel tugging in a focal spot. These holes can present a significant risk for vision loss from the complication of retinal detachment; however, not all retinal holes require treatment. Your retinal specialist will evaluate a number of criteria to determine your specific risk for retinal detachment and then recommend appropriate treatment or monitoring intervals.