Intravitreal Retinal Injections
There are many eye conditions that can be improved or corrected with medicine alone, without the need for surgery. One method for getting medicine into the eye is with an intravitreal injection, particularly if the problem is located in retina, at the back part of the eye. Most people are surprised to learn that intravitreal injections are not particularly painful. In this procedure, anesthetic drops are placed in the eye so that the surface of the eye is numb. Then, after an antiseptic eye drop is placed and an eyelid speculum is inserted to keep the lids and lashes out of the way, the medicine is injected through the white part of the eye, known as the sclera. The whole procedure is just a few minutes.
At Central Valley Eye, the most commonly injected medicines injected are the treating “leaky” blood vessels in the retina. The fluid from these leaking blood vessels gets into the retina causing it to swell, like a wet sponge, resulting in blurry vision. The most common conditions that cause retinal swelling are diabetes, macular degeneration and retinal vein occlusions.
While intravitreal injections are extremely safe, some side effects to be aware of are temporary redness on the white part of the eye and eye irritation from the antiseptics. As with any injection, there is a very small chance of infection at the injection site following this procedure.