What Does a Retina Specialist Do?


Quick Answer

A retina specialist is a doctor who diagnoses and treats components of the human visual system, according to the American Society of Retinal Specialists. Retina specialists treat conditions such as macular degeneration, retinal detachment and eye cancers, as well as diabetic retinopathy and river blindness. Some surgeries that these doctors perform are retinal detachment surgery, diabetic vitrectomy and macular pucker vitrectomy as well as macular hole vitrectomy, macular translocation and repair of a ruptured globe.

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Full Answer

A retina specialist specializes in ophthalmology with a subspecialization in vitreoretinal medicine. Some common employers of retina specialists are hospitals and clinics, and they treat both adults and children. The specialty requires four years of medical school, one year of an internship and three years of an ophthalmology residency in addition to one or two years of a retina-vitreous fellowship to become a retina specialist. These doctors treat conditions of the retina, the macula and the vitreous body that may lead to blindness or vision difficulty.

Retinal surgeries are normally microsurgical procedures, meaning they require a microscope because they are intricate and exact surgeries. Retina specialists also often use lasers as a procedure tool in both offices and hospitals because the doctors work on fragile tissues in very small spaces.

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