Eales Disease

Disease database

Eales Disease is a rare condition that affects the retina, leading to various visual impairments. It is characterized by retinal hemorrhage, vision loss, floaters, scotoma, neovascularization, inflammation, and in severe cases, retinal detachment. Understanding the symptoms, causes, and treatment options for Eales Disease is crucial for early detection and management of this condition.

Retinal Hemorrhage: A Key Indicator

Retinal hemorrhage is one of the primary symptoms of Eales Disease. It occurs when blood vessels in the retina rupture, leading to bleeding. This can result in blurred vision, dark spots, or floaters in the visual field. If you experience sudden vision changes or notice blood in your vision, it is essential to seek immediate medical attention.

Vision Loss: A Gradual Decline

Vision loss is a common consequence of Eales Disease. It typically occurs gradually over time and can vary in severity. As the disease progresses, the retina becomes damaged, leading to a decline in visual acuity. It is crucial to monitor any changes in your vision and consult an ophthalmologist for a comprehensive eye examination.

Floaters: An Annoying Disturbance

Floaters are tiny specks or cobweb-like structures that appear to float in your visual field. They are caused by the presence of clumps or debris in the vitreous humor, the gel-like substance that fills the eye. In Eales Disease, floaters may be more pronounced due to retinal hemorrhage. While floaters are generally harmless, an increase in their number or sudden onset should be evaluated by an eye specialist.

Scotoma: A Dark Spot in Vision

Scotoma refers to a localized area of reduced or absent vision within the visual field. In Eales Disease, scotomas may occur due to retinal damage or inflammation. These dark spots can significantly impact daily activities such as reading or driving. If you notice any blind spots or dark areas in your vision, it is crucial to consult an ophthalmologist for a thorough examination.

Neovascularization: Abnormal Blood Vessel Growth

Neovascularization is the abnormal growth of blood vessels in the retina. In Eales Disease, the retina becomes ischemic, leading to the formation of new, fragile blood vessels. These vessels are prone to leakage and can further contribute to retinal hemorrhage and vision loss. Early detection and treatment are essential to prevent complications associated with neovascularization.

Inflammation: A Contributing Factor

Inflammation plays a significant role in the development and progression of Eales Disease. The exact cause of this inflammation is unknown, but it is believed to be related to an immune response triggered by an unknown stimulus. Inflammatory mediators can damage the retinal blood vessels, leading to hemorrhage and other associated symptoms. Managing inflammation is a crucial aspect of Eales Disease treatment.

Retinal Detachment: A Serious Complication

In severe cases of Eales Disease, retinal detachment may occur. Retinal detachment happens when the retina separates from the underlying tissue, leading to a sudden and significant loss of vision. Prompt medical intervention is necessary to reattach the retina and restore visual function. Regular eye examinations and early detection of Eales Disease can help prevent retinal detachment.

Treatment Options and Management

While there is no definitive cure for Eales Disease, several treatment options can help manage the condition and prevent further vision loss. The choice of treatment depends on the severity of the disease and individual patient factors. Some common treatment approaches include:

  • Anti-inflammatory medications to reduce retinal inflammation and control neovascularization.
  • Laser photocoagulation to seal leaking blood vessels and prevent further hemorrhage.
  • Vitrectomy, a surgical procedure to remove the vitreous humor and replace it with a clear solution.
  • Intravitreal injections of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) drugs to inhibit abnormal blood vessel growth.

It is important to note that early detection and timely treatment can significantly improve the prognosis of Eales Disease. Regular eye examinations, especially for individuals at higher risk, such as young males, can aid in early diagnosis and intervention.


Eales Disease is a complex condition that affects the retina and can lead to significant vision loss if left untreated. Recognizing the symptoms, such as retinal hemorrhage, vision loss, floaters, scotoma, neovascularization, inflammation, and retinal detachment, is crucial for early detection and management. Seeking prompt medical attention and adhering to the recommended treatment options can help preserve vision and improve the quality of life for individuals with Eales Disease.

Haroon Rashid, MD
Rate author
Urgent Care Center of Arlington, VA
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