I am in my 40's and diagnosed a few years ago with lattice retinal degeneration (peripheral), and have worn glasses since childhood for distance. No known family history of this. Went for retinal exam with ophthalmologist a few weeks ago, and they found a small retinal hole in my left eye which they lasered. The Dr didn't seem concerned at all and told me to follow-up in 3 months. During the exam, he seemed fine with the right eye (said he liked what he saw), and didn't even want to call the hole he saw a tear. Asked my optometrist, and they seemed fine with that 3 month period also. I really don't have any more information to include how long I had the hole, although Optomap taken after surgery the Optometrist said he saw 'scar tissue' in both eyes in the degeneration area.
Long story short, looking online it is quite scary regarding this. There doesn't seem anything that can be done, but it is hard to determine if I am low risk, or to the extreme where I can go blind. I know there is of course no way to predict the future, but I saw in some old posts where Dr. John C Hagan III M.D. replied to one poster that he has this also and never had to have anything done, and that checking throughout the year for this is overkill.
My questions are: 1) I'd like to be proactive and have holes or tears lasered rather than having a retinal detachment...so how do we do this? If not frequently throughout the year, how do we know when to go in? 2) If we have lots of floaters, and it is hard to tell when we get more (minus a retinal detachment flood of floaters), how can we determine if a new hole or tear happened so we can go in? 3) to cut down on the worry and anxiety, what is the real risk with lattice retinal degeneration...is it low overall for getting a detachment?, etc? 4) Is getting lasered beneficial at all with no tears/holes...saw online that asymptomatic holes/tears have no benefit to be lasered...so I don't know what I had, or if it was necessary, or basically what to know/do. 5) is there anything in the pipeline that will help beyond surgery (I saw that NT-501 ECT is in trials for retinal degeneration, but don't know if this applies) 6) can the retina heal itself with lattice retinal degeneration? I don't understand how I have "scar tissue" and didn't have holes and tears. and 7) anything else you can recommend, explain, or help to understand how to live with this...and thrive in spite of it. It seems either nothing can really happen, or you can go blind in both eyes instantly with this...extremes.
I trust in the experience of my doctors, and I presume that laser treatment caught early has high success rates (but understand new holes or tears could occur), and surgery for detachment also is fairly high success rates, but I'd prefer to NOT have a detachment (I'm sure most would say the same)! :)
I know this is a lot of questions, but appreciate it! Just trying to understand this better in the months before I can go back to see the Ophthalmologist.