Branch Retinal Vein Occlusion (BRVO)

Blood is carried throughout your body, including your eyes, through arteries and veins. One main artery and one main vein running through the retina of the eye. Branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO) occurs when the branches of the retinal vein become occluded.

Blood and fluid leak out into the retina when a vein is occluded. This fluid might cause the macula to expand, compromising your central vision. Without blood circulation, nerve cells in the eye can die, and eyesight can deteriorate.

branch retinal vein occlusion

Symptoms

Vision loss or fuzzy vision in a part or all of one eye is the most prevalent symptom of branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO). It might occur quickly or gradually worsen over hours or days. It is possible to lose your entire vision at any time.

Floaters may be visible where you can see black patches, lines, or squiggles in your vision. These are shadows cast by small clots of blood spilling from retinal capillaries into the vitreous.

branch retinal vein occlusion

Branch Retinal Vein Occlusion (BRVO) Affects Who?

Branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO) is more common in adults over the age of 50. People with the following health issues are at a higher risk of developing BRVO:

  • blood pressure that is too high
  • diabetes
  • glaucoma
  • Atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) 

You should take the following steps to reduce your risk of BRVO:

  • consume a low-fat diet
  • exercise on a regular basis
  • keep a healthy weight
  • do not smoke

branch retinal vein occlusion

Diagnosis

Your ophthalmologist will use eye drops to dilate (widen) your pupils and examine your retina. They will also perform an optical coherence tomography (OCT) examination of the retina to check for swelling that could impair eyesight.

Fluorescein angiography is a test that they may use. Fluorescein, a yellow dye, is injected into a vein, commonly in the arm. The dye passes through your blood vessels and into your body. As the dye flows through the vessels, a unique camera captures photographs of your retina. This examination determines whether any of the retinal blood vessels are occluded.

It is also possible that your blood sugar and cholesterol levels will be checked. People under the age of 40 who have a branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO) may be checked to see if they have a clotting or thickening problem.

branch retinal vein occlusion

Treatment

Due to enlargement of the macula, vision frequently deteriorates with branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO). The treatment’s main purpose is to dry up the retina. Medication or laser therapy can help reduce fluid and swelling in most situations.

Your ophthalmologist may decide to treat your BRVO with ocular injections of medicine. The medication can aid in the reduction of macula edema. Anti-VEGF injections are a type of therapy used to treat vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). They can help roughly one out of every two patients improve their vision. For the advantage to last, injections must be given on a regular basis for one to two years.

Your ophthalmologist may do focused laser therapy, which is a type of laser surgery. A laser is utilized to generate tiny burns around the macula, which reduces the amount of fluid that leaks from the vessels.

While the majority of people will notice an improvement in their eyesight, some may not. Steroid injections or implants may be a possibility for patients who do not respond to anti-VEGF therapy.

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