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Seeing Floaters?


We often see patients that complain of little transparent ‘blobs’ floating in their field of vision. When the patient tries to focus in on these little blobs, they disappear, only to reappear as soon as they sift their glance.

What these patients are describing is a common phenomenon known as ‘floaters’. The scientific name for floaters is muscae volitantes which is Latin for flying flies.

Floaters aren’t bugs though, they exist inside of your eyeball. Floaters are tiny objects that cast shadows on the retina, the light-sensitive tissue on the back of the eye. Floaters could be bits of tissue, red blood cells, or clumps of protein. These floaters are adrift in the vitreous humor, the gel-like liquid inside of the eye. This is why floaters seem to drift when you move your eye and they sometimes seem to bounce when you stop moving.

These floaters are more noticeable when you are looking at a uniform bright surface such as snow or a blue sky or a blank computer screen.