Have you ever taken your peripheral vision for granted? We generally use both of our eyes together and don't necessarily pay attention to each eye individually. Think about your daily tasks and how difficult they may be if your eyesight was completely boxed in to only the things facing you.
Your central vision is the line of vision that is directly in front of you. It is predominantly used for important tasks like reading and facial recognition. By contrast, your peripheral vision allows you to see the environment outside of your line of sight. Many athletes rely on their peripheral vision to play certain sports, such as soccer and football. We also rely on peripheral vision to help us drive and make turns.
Peripheral vision loss, otherwise known as tunnel vision, is a condition where your peripheral vision is reduced or lost entirely. Patients who have this symptom may experience darkness or a haze below and around their central vision. This can cause you to have trouble navigating around your environment.
Tunnel vision can be brought on by conditions affecting your eyes, brain, or nerves. These include:
It can also occur during moments of high stress, such as a panic attack, and also can be a result of an ophthalmic migraine. However, the direct cause will determine whether it is a temporary bodily response or if it needs further medical attention.
Shobit Rastogi, MD, a CEENTA glaucoma specialist who practices out of our Statesville and Mooresville offices, elaborates on what a patient with tunnel vision may experience. "I once had a patient that had very advanced glaucoma. One day, he went to a baseball game and realized that he was not able to see from one of his eyes. The silent thief – glaucoma – robs people of vision very slowly and can lead to tunnel vision and full blindness."
Treating tunnel vision may require treating or managing the condition that caused it. Medicated eye drops can reduce the pressure in the eye brought on by glaucoma, while underlying conditions with inflammation can be treated with steroids.
Surgical options may be considered for retinal and optic nerve disorders, such as vitrectomy. However, a consultation with an eye care specialist is strongly recommended to determine if surgery is necessary. That’s why CEENTA relies on the expertise of fellowship-trained retina and glaucoma specialists to see what’s causing your tunnel vision and lead you to the path to wider eyesight.
Schedule your next eye appointment with Dr. Shobit Rastogi in Statesville or Mooresville today by using our online scheduling platform or through myCEENTAchart if you are an existing patient.
This blog is for informational purposes only. For specific medical questions, please consult your doctor. To make an appointment with a CEENTA eye care specialist, you may schedule an appointment online, through myCEENTAchart, or by calling 704-295-3000.