Eye Floaters & Flashes Symptoms & Diagnosis

Neighborhood Retina Care Doctors in Sarasota, FL

Retina Specialists Providing Treatment for:

What Are Eye Floaters?

Eye floaters are a frequent symptom experienced by many adult patients. Floaters occur due to a common age-related change occurring inside of your eye. The inside of our eyes is filled with a clear substance called vitreous humor. The back layer of tissue in our eyes is called the retina. The vitreous humor completely fills the space inside of our eyes, and thus, is pressed up against our retina (think of the air inside of a soccer ball as your vitreous humor, and the interior wall of the soccer ball itself as your retina!). The Vitreous Humor is attached to the retina through millions of tiny, microscopic collagen fibers.

When we are born, the vitreous humor is more gel-like (similar to Jell-O!). As we age, the vitreous humor becomes more liquified (think of water!). As our eye is undergoing these organic changes, our vitreous humor naturally and spontaneously shrinks away and separates from the retina in the back of the eye. This is called a PVD, or posterior vitreous detachment. A PVD is normal and happens to everyone as we age! Sometimes, as the vitreous jelly separates during the course of a PVD, it can tug on the retina and potentially create a retinal tear or detachment. That is why it is important to have your eye floaters evaluated quickly!

The collagen fibers that were once used as glue to attach your vitreous humor to your retina, are now floating around inside the center of your eye! These collagen fibers can clump together, creating the floater(s) you see in your vision!

Patients who experience floaters will often describe them as mobile dark spots, spider webs, threads, specks, or snake-like opacities in their vision. Many people may mistake their floaters as a small bug close to their eye that they need to swat away! The floaters themselves will follow along with the motion of your eyes, and are most recognized in bright light or against white walls.

Patients who experience floaters will often describe them as mobile dark spots, spider webs, threads, specks, or snake-like opacities in their vision.

– Dr. Thomas Shane,
Flashes and Floaters Specialist and founder of Shane Retina

How do you Diagnose Eye Floaters?

If you are experiencing floaters, especially new ones, you should seek a prompt dilated examination with an ophthalmologist. This will allow an in-depth look into your eye to visualize your floaters. Our office also utilizes a unique video, which allows us to see your floaters and what they look like as you move your eyes about.

Are my Floaters Dangerous to My Eye? Can They Cause Harm?

Floaters themselves are not dangerous or harmful to the eye. They do not damage your eye or cause pain, but more so are a nuisance and cause for frustration. Though, it is important to note that floaters can sometimes be the result of a different, underlying problem inside of the eye, other than the natural progression of aging.

Patients that experience a sudden onset of many new floaters could potentially have a retinal tear or retinal detachment. Many times, patients will also experience flashes at the time of new floaters, and may even describe a “curtain” in their vision that does not go away when they move their head. If this is the case, it requires immediate medical treatment.

It is important to have your floaters evaluated quickly so that you can be appropriately treated. Do not hesitate to call us today at (941) 351-1200. We can help you!

How do you Treat or Remove Floaters?

Our office recognizes how bothersome floaters can be. Many patients state that their floaters interfere with things they love doing on a daily basis – walking on the beach, reading a good book, or even playing their favorite sport! We want your vision to be the best it can possibly be, so our office provides two potential treatment plans in order to address your chronic floaters. Dr. Shane will evaluate and recommend which procedure is most beneficial for you based on your specific needs!

There are two treatment options available:

  1. Laser Floater Treatment (A.K.A. Vitreolysis)
  2. Surgical Floater Removal (A.K.A. Vitrectomy)

Laser Floater Treatment (A.K.A. Vitreolysis)

Here at Shane Retina, we are one of the only retina practices in Florida to be able to provide this treatment to address your nagging floaters!

This option is an in-office procedure and is most suited for patients who are experiencing few, large floaters for at least 6 months.

During the procedure, we will visualize your floaters with a unique video. This allows us to see precisely the size, shape, and make-up of the floaters in your vision. Yes – we will be able to see exactly what you see! Next, Dr. Shane will place a magnification lens on your eye. They will then use a laser to emit a short pulse of energy onto your floater, vaporizing the majority of the floater. This creates a less visually disabling floater, with only small wisps of the original floater remaining in the eye.

Surgical Eye Floater Removal (A.K.A. Vitrectomy)

This option is an outpatient, surgical procedure where the vitreous jelly inside of your eye is completely removed and replaced with a clear saline solution.

This option is most suited for patients that are experiencing multiple, diffuse, or cloud-like floaters, and have significant interference with activities of daily living. The advantage of vitrectomy is that all eye floaters are removed permanently. This painless surgery lasts approximately 15 minutes under local anesthesia in an outpatient surgery center. There are no significant restrictions following surgery, and eye floaters are immediately resolved.

If you have been dealing with eye floaters for at least 6 months, please give our office a call to schedule a consultation for a floater evaluation!

Are there risks for these procedures?

Laser floater removal is a non-invasive procedure with a low risk for complication. Rarely, laser energy may cause a retinal bleed or lens damage. Surgical removal of floaters involves a 1% to 2% risk for retinal detachment in the weeks or months following vitrectomy. Patients who have not yet undergone cataract surgery can expect the earlier-than-expected formation of cataract following vitrectomy.

Dr. Shane will explain all of the risks, benefits, and alternatives to treatment with you during your evaluation and recommend which option is best for you!

How many floater treatments has your office done?

Dr. Shane has performed hundreds of floater treatments – both Laser and Surgical! It makes us so extremely happy when our patients tell us that their vision has significantly improved following a floater treatment, once again reminding us of our goal to improve every patient’s vision!

What Our Floater Patients Say

I’ve seen Dr. Shane for several issues since 2013. With each visit I am beyond impressed with the punctuality and professionalism of his staff, and with Dr. Shane’s ability to explain complex problems in terms that are easily understood.

Recently he performed a vitrectomy procedure on each of my eyes (removal of the jelly-like substance inside each eyeball) to remove an over-abundance of “floaters.” Both procedures were simple, painless, and while awake during each one he explained in intricate detail every step in the process – something that substantially reduced the amount of angst I experienced because of having my eyes operated on. Post-op follow ups were just as punctual and professional as the procedures themselves.

If you are in need of superb eye health care look no farther than Dr. Thomas Shane. I promise you will come away wanting to write the same sort of review that I wrote. If it was possible to rate him a 6 on a scale of 1-5 I would have done so.

Craig Faanes, Google Review

Laser Floater Treatment (A.K.A. Vitreolysis)

I’ve had cataract surgery already, can I still undergo a floater treatment procedure?

Yes! Patients who have had Cataract surgery already are still able to receive one of the two floater treatment options above. You should discuss with Dr. Shane which option is best for you!

Will my Health Insurance cover or help pay for a floater treatment?

Dr. Shane is in-network with most major health insurance plans, and both floater treatment options are often covered by your insurance, subject to your preexisting co-pays and deductibles! Our office will obtain authorization with your insurance before performing a procedure. When calling to schedule a floater evaluation appointment, feel free to ask one of our staff members more about this so we can answer any questions you may have!

Do I need a referral for a floater evaluation?

No! You do not need to be referred by another healthcare provider. If you are experiencing floaters, especially new ones, it is important to have them quickly evaluated.

It makes us so extremely happy when our patients tell us that their vision has significantly improved following a floater treatment, once again reminding us of our goal to improve every patient’s vision!

– Dr. Thomas Shane,
Flashes and Floaters Specialist in Sarasota Florida

Before and After Laser Eye Floater Treatment by Dr. Shane

Floater Laser Pre-Op

Floater Laser Post-Op

Before and After Surgical Eye Floater Removal

Vitrectomy Pre-Op

Vitrectomy Post-Op

Floater Patient Reviews

Ira Wiss
Ira Wiss
I was very impressed and pleased with my experience at the Retina Care Consultants including all of the staff and Dr Shane. I am from NJ and went to this office because of floaters. My examination seemed very through and profesional. In the end I was relieved that Dr Shane informed me that no immediate treatment is needed and wanted to see me in a month as a follow up to make sure. I am going to their other office in February. I would highly recommend Dr Shane and Retina Care Consultants.
Marion A.
Marion A.
I experienced seeing flashes and floaters in my right eye and called on Friday p.m. for an appointment. They scheduled me very quickly for Monday a.m. I already felt some relief because I felt taken care about and would not have to wait long.The staff and doctor were amazing and very professional and friendly. Dr. Dib took care of me and explained everything very well and took his time until all my questions were answered. Dr. Shane stopped by as well to see if I had any more questions or concerns. Nothing needed to be done at this point.I highly recommend Retina Care Consultants to everyone if eye care is needed. It was an extremely great experience and I am scheduled to return for a check.
Olga Rivera
Olga Rivera
Made an appointment to see Dr. Shane at Retina Care Consulting Office for a Vitrectomy to get rid of my floater. I am writing to thank your entire staff for the excellent care received at your office!! Entering that morning, I was experiencing what was beyond my belief. My wait time in both the waiting room and the exam room was short, not to mention how great the service was. The staff provide an excellent professional and courteous care both Dr. Shane and Dr. Dib were caring and concerned, friendly while maintaining professional and efficient standard of service. I was so very thankful for the excellent care I received at. Retina Care Consulting Office!!
Curtis Weeks
Curtis Weeks
Well this was a truly wonderful and liberating experience. I went to Dr Shane for a vitrectomy to get rid of my floaters and that's exactly what he did. He's a great doctor. The staff in his office are all equally great and professional. I would also like to thank the staff at Bayview Surgical Center for their contribution to the procedure. My vision hasn't been this good in years. Thanks again Dr Shane.
Marlene Little
Marlene Little
Dr Shane is wonderful I can’t believe all the floaters in my eye are gone!! I had such trouble reading and at times even driving! His office is a great TEAM you can trust! Thank you!😀
Faye Blum
Faye Blum
Caring and knowledgeable ophthalmologist! She took care of the floaters in my eye and now my vision is crystal clear. Office staff are great and efficient as well. Very happy with my procedure results!
Peyton Daniel
Peyton Daniel
My grandpa called on a Saturday because he saw new floaters in his eye. The answering service had a staff member immediately call us back and schedule him first thing Monday morning. We had a great experience!
gail mazza
gail mazza
I was concerned with some floaters and flashes I had just begun experiencing. I had never been to this office before, but they were able to get me in within 2 hours of my initial phone call. Staff is very welcoming and friendly. Dr Shane was extremely knowledgeable and competent, and took her time to explain my situation.Highly recommend this office.
susan weishaar
susan weishaar
What a great experience! I was experiencing floaters. I called office and was able to get an appointment within a couple hours. Staff very pleasant and Dr. Shane explained the problem to me in simple to understand terms. I highly recommend Venice Retina
Louise Mallette
Louise Mallette
My husband suddenly had flashes & floaters in his eye. We were flying in few days & so I called around to several Dr's & at Venice Retina Dr Shane's, a person answered the phone instead of a options menu or leaving a message & they would get back. He was able to get in the next day, tested, examined & Dr Shane explain in layman's terms what was happening then arranged a referral so he could be seen in 2 wks in our hometown. Excellent service from the front desk, testing to the Dr Shane all top notch!
Had an appointment to check on floaters, Dr. explained everything...was very easy to understand what is happening with my eye. My husband and I were both impressed.
Lynn Ludecke
Lynn Ludecke
I had floaters in my right eye for years. I met with Dr. Shane and discussed my options a year or so ago. Then, floaters in my left eye appeared, and made it even more frustrating. Dr. Shane performed laser work, one eye at a time, to "bust up" the worst ones. I was hesitant, especially since I had had surgery on my left eye when I was a kid. Dr. Shane thoroughly explained that he is conservative with the laser and will not do anything to harm the retina. It's an amazing procedure and I would highly recommend it to those who just can not, or don't want to deal with floaters that compromise the quality of daily life. Reading was the worse for me. I'm SO much better! Go for the evaluation and see what your options are. No pain. No down time other than the eye being dilated a bit afterwards. His staff is terrific and Dr. Shane is truly gifted in his craft of retinal care.