I woke up with a bright spot in my eye 4 days ago, and a smaller, much dimmer image of it is still present. When I say bright spot, it's like the after-effect of a camera flash, and then it fades out slowly. I have had this phenomena before, but it usually fades away anywhere from minutes to a few hours. I always chalked it up to ocular migraines, as the doctor said my eyes are perfectly healthy. Well, this spot hasn't gone away and it's making me nervous. I went to the doctor yesterday, which was two days after it appeared, and again, perfectly healthy eyes was my diagnosis. He said that it was probably an ocular migraine and should fade within a day or two. But, it hasn't and now it seems to be permanently there, in the left corner of my vision of my left eye. It's almost like it "burned" itself there and it is now a sivler spot when I blink, or when I go from a dark to light room, or look at the sky/bright walls/computer screen. It can also change color depending on what I look at-anywhere from green to pinkish/purple to blue. It stays in the same place and doesn't bounce/move like my other floaters. I thought it might be related to my sinus/ear infection (pressure), but I've been on antibiotics for 6 days now and I'm not sure if there's still pressure. I can't stop thinking about it, and as soon as I think it's gone, it's there again, like hide-and-go-seek, except I don't want to play anymore. I will continue to pray for healing, but does anyone have a suggestion as to what it could be? Thanks
Do these tests, Visual field, amsler grid, macula OCT or fluoriscene angiogram, have to do with blood flow? The MD I saw did say that maybe the blow flow changes in my eye was causing this, but that it isn't harmful. He gave me a card for a retinal specialist in the area. I guess I'll have to make an appointment since it hasn't resolved itself. I'm a little nervous though. The fear of the unknown I suppose. Thanks for your reply.
Doe a internet search on Amsler grid, read about the test, print out a grid and test your eyes daily to monitor the spot. The retina can be affected by blood flow, systemic disease, inflammation and other things.
i have had this problem for nearly 10 years now with multiple episodes a year of a bright spot like the after-image of a camera flash that fades over several weeks to a small permanent blind spot ...i have these in both eyes, though not simltaneuously.
i have had several field tests and an oct, as well as a fluroscein angiogram during the first episode, still no diagnosis.
i am leaning towards some kind of permanent migraine aura, as everyone keeps telling me my eyes look fine. i am going to have another FA during the next episode, and will probably see a neuro-ophth after that.
anyway, you might want to have a look at this site:
Mel07Green's reference http://www.cmaj.ca/cgi/content/full/173/12/1441
is excellent and all those that post here with spots, blobs, blind areas or a personal or family historyof migraine should read this short medical paper.
Yes, mine is similar to yours. I've had my spot for a couple weeks and am scheduled to see an eye MD next week. I hope they can tell me what it is. I could live with it if I knew it wouldn't get worse and it was nothing serious. It's just scary not knowing. I'm sure that's how you feel. I've read about others that have similar things and they've had a couple different diagnosis. One turned out to be fluid behind the retina that was called Central Serous Retinopathy and can be brought on by stress. The other claimed his doctor found a hemmorhage in his eye. Both were told they would eventually clear up. Some were told they were types of migraines. I'm not sure if a headache would have to accompany the spot in order for it to be a migraine though. I don't have headaches with mine. Anyways, I'll let you know what my eye doc says. If you go see yours let us know what they say. Oh, and here's what another helpful doc told me. http://en.allexperts.com/q/Ophthalmology-Optometry-979/spot-vision.htm?zIr=5
Thanks for all of your responses. I hate that you have to endure this, but it's reassuring when others can sympathize. I know people think I'm crazy or a hypochondriac. If you don't have these things, it's hard to imagine I guess. Well, I went to the retinal specialist today and he said my eyes, especially my macula, were very healthy. He didn't see any tear, infection, swelling... He also believes that I am experiencing occular migraines. If this particular spot doesn't dissolve after 3 weeks, he told me to come back for the angiogram. I'm a little nervous thought because I've had dye injected for an MRI in the past and have experienced a severe burning feeling up and down my arm, like a million jelly fish were stinging me. Not sure if that was an allergy or just a reaction. Don't really want to take the chance. But, for now, he didn't want to subject me to it, if he didn't see anything in my eyes at this time. Just like mel07green, I do notice that my bright spot seems to have faded and become a permanent spot, and maybe that's just what it'll be. But, I will continue to pray for complete healing. I will check out that article and hopefully put my mind at ease a bit more. I'll be praying for all of you who are experiencing this. Even if it's not harmful, it's still kinda scary. The thought that one day they might cover my field of vision. Oh, well, can't think like that I suppose. Read you later!
tam31, i can totally relate to your last comments. i have had about 20+ episodes of this over the past eight or so years and it doesn't get any less scary for me. i am terrified i will get one of these spots right in my central vision that will interfere with reading etc.
like you, i was told me retinas look perfectly healthy. it's very worrisome. sometimes i can go for months without thinking too much about it, other times i am pretty much a nervous wreck.
let me know how things go for you - i'd be very interested to know.
I'm so glad to hear I'm not the only one with this! i honestly feel better about the whole thing knowing that you mel have been getting these for nearly 10 years and they haven't messed up your central vision. that's what i was most worried about! i still very anxious about the eye exam coming up. i think i'll feel better once i have it looked at. i just have a feeling i'm going to get a "clean" bill of health and be dismissed. like i'm just supposed to go on and ignore this spot? will cross that bridge if i get there. will let y'all know what my doc says. jess
yes, please let us know how the exam goes. rarely do i come across people with similar symptoms and too often do they disappear before sharing their diagnosis or lack thereof. (i have yet to encounter a doctor who says, "ah, yes, well that's so-and-so ..." when i describe my symptoms).
no, i wouldnt' say my central vision is "messed up" but i do have many, many of these spots that i can see on an amsler grid (or anything else of contrast for that matter). so the constant reminder is there and i am always dreading a "new episode".
i wish i could share some wonderful coping strategies with you in regards to the uncertainty and anxiety this causes me, but i'm afraid i'm not too good on that front, particularly since my last episode in may. still trying to ground myself following that triple-whammy (three spots in three weeks).
HOWEVER - you may well be experiencing a one-off phenomena! your spot will most likely fade both from your vision and from your memory. let's hope so.
please let me know how your exam goes. odds on you'll get a clean bill of health ...
Well, back from the eye doc and i got the clean bill of health too. did the field visual electronically and manually, amsler grid. perfectly healthy eyes i'm told. my doc said her thoughts were a possible "attached floater" that she couldn't pick up or i've become aware of my natural blind spot which sounds crazy but is possible. my spot is very near or on where my natural blind spot is. she said to try and stop obsessing about it and let her know if it gets bigger or worse or if i get other "symptoms" that accompany it. i even asked her if hormones or something could cause this. she said it's possible and that the pituitary gland and thyroid can have affects on vision. i could have my ob/gyn run blood tests just to rule that out but she's doubtful it's that. i did find it interesting that we're all women experiencing this....at least i think we are?
to see an attached floater with an amsler grid it would need to be in the area of the macula, some are but most floaters are seen in the peripheral retinal outside of the area tested by the Amsler grid, so the short answer is sometimes yes but usually no.
well, i had a new "episode" on the weekend. it was briefer than normal, lasted only half a day. i woke up with it and it was gone by mid afternoon.
however, as usual, the residual scotoma is there.
it's sooo hard to get my anxiety under control when this keeps happening.
i am looking into valproic acid or the like as a prophylatic? have you heard of that for retinal migraine?
I have had something similar for about 4 1/2 years. It's actually a distortion in my left eye. I noticed one day that a line running down a wall looked bent . The siding on my house lokms distorted or kind of bent in places as well. If I cover my right eye and only look with the left I have a more noticeable blind spot and things just outside of center off to the left look a little distorted. I have had my eyes examined by 2 retinal specialist probably 10 times in the last 4 1/2 years and they say it's fine. One doctor said it was a floater stuck on something causing this distortion.
very similar condition to mine. i mostly notice mine when two things that come together contrast. like a white door against a darker wall. it's this distorted "spot" like a blur. about the size of the tip of a finger or a dime off in the distance. mine's in my right eye just off to the right and slightly lower of my central vision. sometimes when i look around i see a faded "camera flash" spot in the same spot as the blur. i was told this was probably an after affect or eye trick. like when you close your eyes and still see the spot. it then fades away. i was given a clean bill of health by an eye doc too. i was told it was a possible attached floater that was undetectable or i've become aware of my blind spot. i do not notice it on an amsler grid. i think because the grid's too close. i just hope this is the only one i get! i will continue to have this spot checked yearly. if something changes or i actually get a name for this condition i will surely let everyone know. i thank dr hagan for his interest and help in this matter. let us know doc if you ever run across one of your patients that have a similar issue! god bless you for what you do!
that's reassuring you can't see you spot on am amsler grid. i can see mine. horizontal blinds are filling out any kind of form with all those lines are both nightmares. ditto striped, door frames ... i wonder why my brain doesn't tune them out??
I've been getting the exact same symptoms as everyone else here off and on for years. It started for me when I was 20. I got a bright spot in my right eye, just off center. It started fairly prominent, but eventually faded a little, although it's still there to the day. I'm 34 now.
Like everyone else I become aware of it when there are contrasting light and dark backgrounds (venetian blinds are the worst!) and can really notice it when I blink my eye, especially when looking the sky while doing it. I'm sure I look strange walking down the street while doing this. I can sometimes still see it with my eyes closed. Which for me is why it reall reminds me of a camera flash too. They also tend to be pretty small. Over the years I've had many more episodes of this, but the spots tends to go away after 3 or 4 days. A few years back I did get another small one that seemed to stick around.
Just recently I got another "camera flash" off center in my left eye that's still there a week and a half later, so I'm chalking it up to being permanent I guess. I went to the ophthalmologist and, like everyone else, got a clean bill of health. This worrys me a little because it's a little bigger than the others.
It's only a minor annoyance but I too am worried that one day I'll get one right in the center of my vision.
I guess there's solace in the fact that in 14 years I haven't got one in the center yet so.......
Anyways, just sharing that there are indeed others out there with the same problem. It's good to know I'm not alone :)
wow! you post sounds like i could have written it! i can sooo relate to your comment about walking, staring at the sky, blinking furiously. i do that OBSESSIVELY when each new spot appears, trying in will it away, i guess.
i would say about 80% of my spots are permanent. they are exactly as you describe. i have recently moved and the house has venetian blinds everywhere - BLAH.
i agree that they are a minor annoyance - it is the fear of one appearing smack-bang at the point of focus (or directly to the right of it, as far as reading effectively goes) that absolutely terrifies me.
i took take solace in the fact it's been 10 years and i haven't got one in the center yet.
can i ask what tests you've had and whether any doctors have attempted an explanation?
until reading this thread, and particularly your post (with you history of multiple episodes with residual effects) i truly did feel i was all alone in this ...
I've been to the doctor about this only once. Last week in fact. The only tests I had were the standard ones I guess. The oph. seemed to think it was just floaters. Which I knew he was going to say. I know it's not floaters because I have them also...they don't bother me.
Like you, I tend to lean toward some sort of permanent aura from a migraine. I seem to be prone to migraines. When I was in middle school I would get migraines with auras and headaches. The auras I would get then would practically blind me, and start mainly in my peripheral vision, but would go away within a few hours. I don't get those anymore but these little spots I get now remind of smaller versions of the auras I would get in middle school.
I also had an ocular migraine without a headache about a year ago. It was the kind that start out small in the center and grew pretty fast into the, I guess what's called, scintillating scotoma. It was gone within an hour though.
Given those two things I tend to think what we're experiencing is something like a migraine, but the auras persist. Also given the fact that doctors really can't tell what's going on by looking at the eye it must be something in the brain. The other weird thing is that I can still see the spot when my eyes are closed, which further leads me to think it's in the brain and not the eyes.
Like you, mel, I obsess about them when they come. I eventually just try to forget about them and I ususally can until another one pops up.
One thing I think we can ease our minds with is the fact that, if this were something that did cause people to eventually go blind, more docs would know about it, hence probably more research....so an so forth.
I suspect it's probably something benign and mainly confined to the peripheral vision. I hope so anyway....
Keep me updated as it's good to know there's someone else who's dealing with this.
That's a nice point you make about more docs knowing about it if caused blindness. i hadn't looked at it that way. i just tend to get frustrated that something significant is being missed.
I was going to ask you whether you had a history of migraine with aura. mine started when i was about 10, persisted throughout high school, college, then tapered off in my 20s. now i get one every few years, but it doesn't develop into a full-blown headache.
as for the location of these damn spots, mine are definitely in my central vision. can you see yours on am amsler grid? my amsler grid is pretty messed up. they are not right at my point of focus, but pretty close to it.
also, are they "positive", "negative" or a combination of both, depending on what you are looking at? (I mean, do you see it always as a greyish spot or are things "missing" ...)
i agree it's good to someone else is dealing with this strange thing,m especially when so many doctors have looked at me blankly when i try to describe it.
wow, this is so crazy to read... i have had the same camera-flash-like spot just to the left of center in my right eye (only) for a little more than 10 years. when i first got it, it affected my reading, but i have gotten so used to it since then. recently i've been getting a lot of migraines with auras so i notice it more (it makes me think i'm getting another one; false alarm). but i've seen a retinal specialist for my lattice degeneration and he seemed to think it was fine since it had been around for so long without changing.... bizarre....
I just did an amsler grid for the first time and I guess the spots would be more central to my vision as well because I can see all of my spots with my head about 1 foot away fromt the grid. When said peripheral I guess I meant not directly in the center.
soplussed, yes my spots are also sometimes 'positive' and 'negative'. They're mainly 'negative' when I don't blink and something passes through the spot that doesn't really contrast with the background
For example, when looking a white computer screen and I pass the mouse pointer across the spot the pointer just disappears.
The spot is 'positive' when the backgrounds contrast or I blink.
Are you guys able to see the spot just after you close your eyes? I can sometimes.
nancydrew, it's good to hear your doc seems to think it's fine. That's reassuring.
yep, i'm exactly the same as you, as far as the "positive" and "negative" spots go.
i can see the spots with my eyes closed for a few days/weeks after the first appear. once they settle down and become scotomas, i can no longer see them except under the conditions you describe above - positive when i blink, negative when i pass the mouse through one, etc.
so you can see them on the amsler grid? that means they in the central 10 degrees of vision, ie the macula. same as mine.
tell me, how do they manifest on the grid? as missing bits? as grey spots? also, how many do you have, roughly?
i can't tell you how reassuring (not sure if that's the right word) to talk with someone going through the same ...
Hey, I've got the exact same problem. My problem started with floaters though, and then six months later I developed first one small spot and then within weeks a couple more in both eyes. Some disappeared, but some seem to be permanent and have been there for almost a year now. Real small spots that I really only see when looking at something with contrasting lines. Spreadsheets on the computer are the worst. I've been to more eye doctors than I can name, retinal specialists, neuro-ophths, etc. No one can find anything wrong at all. A few have mentioned the possibility of some sort of an infection causing it, but nothing has shown any definitive signs of that. I'll let you know if they figure anything out.
I'm new to this board, but I've had my original blind spot for 2 years, a new one cropped up a week ago, and I think another new one is starting as of an hour ago. All three are in my right eye.
I've had the visual field and OCT tests numerous times, my eyes are healthy, the ophthamologist can find nothing wrong. They started out as a "camera flash" or as though I looked at a sun glare, and then faded away to a blind spot. They're highly noticeable on an Amsler grid, or against the sky, computer screen, lampshade, etc.
I decided to take it to my family doctor and see if she can recommend other tests (maybe an MRI or CT scan?) to figure out what this is. I see her this coming Tuesday, and I will post here when and if we figure this out.
By the way, I'm female and 33 years old. No other health problems except for seasonal allergies. I am tired of paying my opthamologist for the same expensive tests over and over again, which never show anything. Insurance doesn't cover 100% of every test, and now I have a hefty bill over there.
OMG I'm so happy to have found this site! I have had a flashing bright light in my right eye for 2 weeks now. It's there 24-7 whenever I blink!! I had a full eye exam last week and the eye dr. found a small retinal hemorrhage and ordered full blood work up which revealed, you guessed it, nothing. So I'm not sure if the hemorrhage is what I'm seeing when I blink or what. Eye dr. said she really didn't have an explanation, maybe a floater, maybe an ocular migraine thing, but it's there 24-7 going on 3 weeks now. I have floaters and this is different. My floaters are gray blobs or streaks, this thing is a bright spot, like after a camera flash, and only when I blink. It doesn't float down like floaters do if I stare at them long enough. It's making me crazy!!
one would think a doc would pick up on this and try to find an answer since there are so many with this condition. i've had an mri recently because of a possible pituitary imbalance and it came back negative for any kind of tumors so for all you out there that sit there and think ...."could it be a tumor?". it's most likely not. no tumors or anything like that in my head and my spot is still there!
Last night I had a wicked headache and my flashing bright spot was suddenly MUCH brighter and more obvious during the worst part of the headache. Kinda made me wonder if it is in fact some kind of migraine related thing. It's only in my right eye though, and everything I read seems to indicate that migraine auras occur in both eyes and are visible even in the dark or with eyes closed, which is not the case with mine.
It's back to "normal" today, less obvious but still there every single time I blink.
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I'm new to this forum, so I have a previous post with no comments! Just trying to figure this out - sorry. Of course I could blame it on my light-filled blob that's visiting the left corner of my left eye. I find all these comments extremely interesting and very comforting actually. I began getting this light blob a couple weeks ago and it's intermittent. Seems to appear mostly at night. I haven't seen anyone yet, but I'm not encouraged to do so now that I've read through all your comments. I want to say that I am 32 years old, healthy, and pregnant for the first time. I am wondering if indeed it has something to do with blood flow, as someone in a previous post mentioned. Blood volume in a pregnant women increases 40-50%. Heart murmurs are common as a result of the increase in blood flow, the lenses on my eyes thicken, and perhaps the blood flow increase effects vision. I have never had this sort of thing happen, so I figured it was completely a result of being pregnant.
sounds like this is nothing life-threatening and just an annoyance. i count my blessings that it is just that and am moving on. thanks again to the doc that first helped me here! i certainly appreciate what you do here. now i've got a life to live and four children to raise!!
Like you I am so pleased to have found this site. I first noticed a problem with my eyes at work where there are venetian blinds - my eyes would go a bit fizzy until they were pulled up - the blinds that is! Now for the last couple of weeks I have a small round disc of bright light - like a camera flash when I close my eyes and a dark circle when I close them - happens every time I blink which then makes me blink slowly just to make sure it is still there. Also there sometimes when I close my eyes which is annoying as can see a darker spot when I am trying to sleep which then makes my mind start wondering what is going on - I am a bit of a worrier anyway and in the middle of the night start thinking what is going on..? Recently saw optician who couldn't see anything wrong - and put it down to a possible faulty contact lens - which I'm sure it wasn't but she told me to go back if the lights persist which they have as there may be 'something wrong with my actual eye'. But after reading this I do feel relieved that lots of people have had a similar experience without anything too drastic going on.
I noticed my vision spot about 2 years ago. It was pretty bad when I first noticed it. All I could do was walk around blinking and wondering if I was going blind. I'm a bit of a hypochondriac so I told my self to let it be. It didn't fully go away, but I felt that it wasn't as prominent. So for A few years I could barely tell it was there. It got a lot more noticeable in the last few days and now I noticed one in each eye. They aren't right in the center of my vision. One is just under the center and the other is off the right. There just as you said, as if i stared at a light or a flash just went off. They stay in the same spot and I notice them most when I blink or look at different things. I even still notice them long after iv blinked. It good to know that they don't sound dangerous to my sight. I have a doctors appointment this week and I'll probably bring it up to him.
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