What Is a Retina Specialist?

July 1, 2022

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The retina is an extremely important part of your eye. It is the part at the back of the eye that contains millions of cells that take in light and turn it into images, allowing you to see. This means that, if the retina becomes diseased or injured, your vision can be severely impacted. That’s where a retina specialist, a doctor that focuses specifically on treating the retina, can help. Here’s what to know about whether you may need one.

What Is a Retina Specialist?

Retina specialists are ophthalmologists who specialize in medical conditions and surgical needs involving the retina. They are trained to use specialized equipment and techniques to treat conditions like retinal tears, retinal detachment, cancer, and other conditions of the eye. Having a retina specialist treat any retina conditions you may have can drastically improve your sight.

What Education and Training Do Retina Specialists Need?

Becoming a retina specialist requires a great deal of specialized training. This includes:

  • Four years of undergraduate study.
  • Four additional years of medical school.
  • One year of an internship.
  • Three years of residency under the supervision of an experienced Doctor of Ophthalmology.
  • One to two years of a specialized fellowship with extensive training in diagnostic and surgical procedures involving the retina.

Conditions Commonly Treated by a Retina Specialist

Retinal Tear and Detachment

Retinal tears and retinal detachment are common conditions that can lead to vision loss. Symptoms include seeing flashes of light, seeing shadows, and blurred vision.

Retinal detachment means the retina begins to separate from the blood vessels at the back of the eye. This is a medical emergency that requires the expertise of a retina specialist to avoid complete vision loss.

A Foreign Body in the Eye

A foreign body is some object in the eye that should not be there, such as dust, metal shavings, tiny wood chips, etc. A retina specialist must make sure all fragments of the foreign body are removed gently and completely. If left untreated, the foreign body can cause significant damage to your eye.


Endophthalmitis is a type of infection following eye surgery or injury that causes swelling. A retina specialist can help provide relief by administering antibiotics to treat the infection and heal the eye.

Schedule a Consultation With Retina Specialists in the Falls Church, VA Area

At Ahn Nguyen Ophthalmology, we offer state-of-the-art retinal procedures performed by the highly trained and experienced retina specialist Dr. David L.Parver. Our retina treatment services include:

  • Laser Surgery: Often performed to repair retinal tears.
  • Freezing Treatment: Also known as cryopexy. Scar tissue from the freezing process can keep the retina in place.
  • Scleral buckle: Helps reattach a detached retinal in its original position.
  • Vitrectomy: Removal of blood or fluid leaked from the retina, restoring clearer vision.

Contact us by calling our office or filling out our online form to schedule a consultation with our team.

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