A macular hole occurs when natural forces on the surface of the retina pull a gap in the center of the vision, which typically occurs spontaneously without any risk factors.

The macula is another term for the center of the retina responsible for the most detailed vision. A macular hole is a gap in the very center of the retina which causes a blind spot. These holes can form spontaneously or after the detachment of the vitreous (the jelly-like substance that fills the eye and is attached to the retina). Most macular holes remain open unless surgical repair is performed. To surgically fix a macular hole, a retina specialist removes the vitreous, peels a surface layer off the retina, and injects a gas bubble in the eye to close the hole. Surgical repair is successful in closing the hole and improving vision in more than 95% of cases.