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What is Retinal Vein Occlusion?

At Desert Retina Consultants, we can help diagnose and treat retinal vein occlusion – also known as a block of the retinal vein. While there is no cure, our retina experts can help you minimize the damaging effects caused by the blockage, treat any complications from the condition, and help reduce the risk of the issue occurring in both eyes.

What is Retinal Vein Occlusion?

Retinal Vein Occlusion (RVO) is the second most common retinal vascular disorder after diabetic retinopathy. Though it can affect both eyes, it usually presents with acute, unilateral, painless vision loss – or, more simply put – it’s more common in one eye only. In milder, non-central cases, patients may show no symptoms. Vision loss typically occurs from compromised blood flow and swelling in the macula, the retina’s central portion responsible for critical visual tasks such as reading and recognizing faces. Left untreated, RVO can lead to glaucoma and severe visual impairment.

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What are the Types of Retinal Vein Occlusion?

Branch Retinal Vein Occlusion (BRVO)

Branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO) is the blockage of one of the smaller branch veins.


Central Retinal Vein Occlusion (CRVO)

Central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO) is the blockage of one of the smaller branch veins.


  • Blurry vision in part or all of one eye
  • Dark spots or floating lines
  • Pain or pressure in the eye
  • No Symptoms
  • Age (common over the age of 60)
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Glaucoma or raised intraocular pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Conditions that ‘thicken’ the blood

How is Retinal Vein Occlusion Treated?

Treatments for RVO at Desert Retina Consultants include:

  • Annual vision monitoring with dilated eye exams
  • Laser treatments
  • Intra-vitreal injections – Anti-VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) drugs into the vitreous cavity (retina location) can be a highly effective treatment for retinal vein occlusion. Anti-VEGF drugs stop the growth of new blood vessels in the eye. Most patients require a series of injections, so they require periodic monitoring to evaluate when additional treatments with anti-VEGF agents are needed.


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Serving patients in Palm Desert, Palm Springs and Riverside areas.