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What is the reason for visual halos?

Q: I am 23 years old and for the past several months I have been having problems with my eyes. I went to the doctor for floaters. He said what I was seeing is normal. During my visit to doctor I begun to see halos around lights, but they weren't very noticeable and I forgot to mention it to the doctor. Since then they have gotten worse and have been very noticeable around almost any light against a dark background for a couple months. Glaucoma runs in my family. Could the doctor have missed something last time? He said that other than the floaters, my eyes were fine.

A:Floaters are caused by breaking of fibres in the jelly (vitreous) of the eye and will be noticeable when you look against bright lights or bright background. Normally it comes with age and more common in myopia (shortsightedness). Very rarely i.e. 1-2% of patients it can be associated with tears in the retina which can cause retinal detachment later. But if you have had it for last two months already have not got any visual deterioration then this is very unlikely. Even if you have family history of glaucoma, your young age is against that. If there was slightest suspicion, your eye specialist would have diagnosed it. Don't worry. Best thing would be that you try to check your own visual fields ie how much you can see in the periphery while closing one eye and looking straight ahead and compare that from day today, if you notice any deterioration or restriction of visual fields then you should see your eye specialist.

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