Sudden Loss of Vision

General Information

A sudden loss of vision or partial loss of vision in one eye is an urgent warning sign of dysfunction of the blood vessels. This sort of change may involve the entire field of vision in one eye or it may affect only a part of the field of vision. A patient may experience the sensation of a curtain descending over one eye with a fading of vision. The term that physicians use for this condition is amaurosis fugax. A more common term is transient monocular blindness or fleeting blindness involving only one eye.

This occurs when the blood flow to the retina, the part of the eye that receives the light images, is temporarily cut off. Interruption of blood flow of no more than a few seconds will cause this sort of visual loss. If the interruption of blood flow continues, the loss of vision will become permanent.

Important Points in Treatment
The occurrence of transient monocular blindness is an important warning sign of the possibility of a stroke. When it occurs it should not be ignored. The problem should be brought to the attention of your physician immediately. It cannot wait for your next scheduled visit to your physician or eye doctor.

Call Our Office If ...

  • You develop a sudden change in vision, particularly if it involves only one eye.
  • If the visual loss is only transient and normal vision promptly returns.
  • You develop a sudden change in vision involving only one eye which is not transient or momentary. Call a doctor or visit an emergency room.