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Why do I keep getting floaters and flashing lights in my vision?

(25 Posts)
DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 15:26:44

For the last few days I have had 3-4 of these episodes a day. I have a constantly flashing floater type thing in my vision in the right hand side of my right eye. Then I get it all over my vision 3-4 times a day.

I do get migranes, not a frequently as this. I have glaucoma in my right eye which I take 2 lots of eye drops for twice a day. My right eye does feel quite sore and dry and like it has been bruised IYSWIM.

I found out last week that I am pg with number 2, could this be agravating my glaucoma? <clutches at straws>

Should I make an appointment with my eye doctor, opthalmist (sp?) ??

I have also been feeling quite dizzy with it.

horsemadgal Wed 19-Nov-08 15:28:59

It could be low blood pressure. I'd ask your midwife.

CrushWithEyeliner Wed 19-Nov-08 15:29:57

Flashing light/floater indicates a detached retina - my Dad had it it needs urgent attention so I would go to see someone asap..good luck

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 15:30:02

Opthalmologist....obviously blush

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 15:31:40

Would seeing my gp be okay?

rosie69 Wed 19-Nov-08 16:56:06

Hi dusty, dont want to alarm you but my dad recently had the same symptoms and was refered to an eye clinic and was diagnosed with a detatched retina, he had surgery the next day (which was painless) and has made a full recovery it may not be this but go to your opthalmologist or local eye hospital asap and get it checked as you can loose your sight very quickly if not treated.. good luck

Are you at risk of a detatched retina? Are you very short-sighted? (e.g. a prescription of -6 or more)

If you're at risk, please go to A+E now - it makes a real difference. Otherwise, yeah, could be blood pressure, could be something else, GP probably fine.

Hmmm, thinking about it, if it was a detaching retina, you would have the symptoms in only one eye (I would think? Both wouldn't go at once, would they, unless you've been playing rugby or bungee-jumping ...) - do you have them on one side or both?

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 17:50:06

I have the constant flashing lights on the right side only, which then escalates 3-4 times a day to a full blown flashing light illumination type thing across both eyes. I get the floaters after I have had the flashing light thing.

I do get this normally due to having glaucoma, but it is usually once a months near when AF due, as the pressure in my eye seems to increase slightly then. But I found out I was PG last Thursday and since Sunday I have had this everyday. I get terrible headaches once the flashing lights have gone.

I am almost blind in my right eye but my left eye has perfect sight hmm

Should I ring gp? Don't really feel right going to A&E, TBH I don't really feel right going to GP, can they advise over the phone?

Hmm, I doubt this is a detatching retina, it probably is something to do with glaucoma (which I don't really know anything about - something to do with pressure in the eyeballs?). Have you been pregnant before? How long ago?

I would get to a medic, yes. This is your vision, and if you only have one functioning eye ... oh, call NHS Direct, and see what they say?

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 18:53:59

Yes I have been pg before, DD will be one tomorow grin

I did have this same problem when pg with DD but not until the 2nd trimester and not as bad as this. I feel like my head is going to implode sad

I think I will give NHS Direct a call once I have got DD in bed.

Thanks for the advice smile

Ok, it's unlikely this is a retinal detachment. NHS Direct may still be concerned about this, and ask you to go to A+E, though.

I would be worried this was a sign of a blood pressure issue or something.

fishie Wed 19-Nov-08 19:55:46

are you anywhere near an eye hospital? they have emergency clinics and you wouldn't have the full a&e thing where they may not be able to help you anyway.

my floaters and vision generally is much worse when i'm tired, it could just be that you are more aware of them because you have pg knackeredness.

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 20:19:10

My bp was as my MW described it 'boringly normal' grin when I was pg with DD. Although I have been quite light headed and dizzy since I found out about this pg. I was thinking that it is psycosomatic (SP?). I am so tired at the mo though and DD hasn't been well, so I have been up with her most nights.

I am probably just tired.

The nearest eye hosp/clinic to me is about a 2 hour drive away. I don't drive and DH no longer has his car. I could get there if I needed to as my bro would take me but I don't feel it is that bad IYSWIM.
I wouldn't want to get all the way there to be told that it is just normal with PG. Also I don't want to bother the docs if it is nothing IYSWIM.

The local hopsital is very small and shares there eye specialist with the hospital in the next town hmm so no guarantee that I would even see someone who knows specifically about eyes.

TsarChasm Wed 19-Nov-08 20:24:01

Please Dusty you must have this checked asap.

Those are sometimes signs of a detached retina and not getting it checked urgently could be detrimental to your sight. Better safe than sorry.

nooka Wed 19-Nov-08 20:28:23

I had floaters when I was pregnant with ds, and went to A&E thinking they would just check my blood pressure (I work in a hospital, so popping in seemed an easy option). They sent me to the emergency eye clinic, who gave me some unpleasant tests and told me I'd bust a blood vessel at the back of my eye, but not to worry about it too much unless it happened again.

I think if I were you I would get it checked out by someone who knew what they were doing. If you only have the one eye with good vision then it's doubly precious. Can you ring someone at the clinic where you usually are seen for your glaucoma? They might give the best advice as they would know your history.

nooka Wed 19-Nov-08 20:31:29

Oh and it's not that it is normal with pregnancy, it's that pregnancy can affect your blood pressure, hence triggering things like this. So your pregnancy might well be the reason why you have the floaters, but they still would need to make sure there is nothing significant going on. I had two episodes in one of my pregnancies - they are really nasty, s much sympathy. Another option would be to pop into a local optician and ask their advice, but I suspect it might be outside of their remit to do anything other than tell you to see a specialist.

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 20:35:36

I am ringing NHS Direct now, but will call my consultants ofice tomorrow and see what they say.

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 20:39:35

NHS direct says A&E, I feel a fraud though, cos other than that I feel okay. Its not an accident or an emergency.
I am having to wait for DH to come back from work and will get my bro to take me.

Thank you all for the advice smile

TsarChasm Wed 19-Nov-08 20:44:38

Good luck Dusty.

I had to have an emergency trip recently cos it turned out I have a tear on my retina. I felt fine. Couldn't understand what all the fuss and urgency was until they explained about flashing lights and floaters and how very important it is to have it checked immediately. If I hadn't been told I'd have thought the same as you.

It might be nothing or if it is it'll be fixable but hard to put right if you leave it.

Let us know how you get on!

DustyTv Wed 19-Nov-08 20:47:47

Thanks.
I just called my mum, she and dad are coming now, mum is going to sit with DDand dad will take me to A&E.

DH will get a shock when he comes in to find his MIL here instead of me <evil grin> (they love each other really wink)

nooka Wed 19-Nov-08 22:03:01

Good luck Dusty. I hope that it is nothing serious, but really don't feel bad about going to A&E, if you need to be seen urgently by a specialist then going to A&E is NOT inappropriate.

Lightheaded and dizzy sounds like low blood pressure, fwiw.

Hope everything's ok.

horsemadgal Thu 20-Nov-08 21:56:16

Any news Dusty?

DustyTv Fri 21-Nov-08 15:27:05

Update:
All is fine grin...yay...

I went to A&E and they passed me over to the out of hours GP unit at our local hospital. The doctor I saw there was lovely. She got in contact with the eye specialist and he made me an appoinment to see him at 10am the next day. Very efficiant I thought.

He checked my pressure in my eyes and checked for detached retina. My pressure is fine and my retina is not detaching. He thinks it is all due to the extra blood in my system from the PG.

He has made me another appointment to see him again next month to keep an eye (excuse the pun grin) on me, and if there are any problems I will make an appointment to see my consultant.

Thank you all for your advice.

nooka Fri 21-Nov-08 19:53:11

Great. Glad you got sorted, and there is nothing seriously wrong.

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