SummaryThe macula is a small area in the center of the retina where light is sharply focused to produce the detailed color vision needed for tasks such as reading and driving. When a full-thickness defect develops in the macula, the condition is referred to as macular hole.
CausesMacular hole commonly affects people over the age of 55 and most often occurs in women. The vast majority of cases develop spontaneously without an obvious cause. For this reason, there is currently no effective way to prevent their formation and development. If a macular hole develops in one eye, there is a 5% to 15% risk of one developing in the other eye.
SymptomsThe most common symptom of macular hole is a gradual decline in the central (straight-ahead) vision of the affected eye. This can occur as:
• Distortion (straight lines appearing wavy)
• A dark spot in the central vision The degree to which vision is affected will depend on the size and location of the macular hole, as well as the stage of its development.