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Central Retinal Artery Occlusion

Central retinal artery occlusion (CRAO) is a medical condition that is characterized by loss of vision on account of the blockage of the central artery of the retina. A clot from the carotid artery or the heart is usually the cause for the sudden flow of blood to the retina. Patients suffering from hypertension or carotid artery disease or diabetes are likely to suffer this condition. Arteriosclerosis is another likely cause for Central retinal artery occlusion. Due to the blockage of the retinal central artery, there is sudden and painless loss of vision. Another less severe condition is when a smaller branch artery to the retina gets blocked. This leads to loss in vision that is not as severe as in the case of CRAO.


If not attended to immediately, central retinal artery occlusion can leave a person permanently blinded. It is essential to restore retinal blood flow. An ophthalmologist may try to reduce the pressure in the eye with glaucoma agents. The embolus is moved from the central retinal artery to a branch artery. A surgical procedure whereby a small amount of fluid is drawn from the eye is carried out sometimes. This can seek to lower the pressure in the eye. Laser treatment is also done to reduce swelling and improve vision in the case of branch vein occlusion. But in most cases, it is not easy to restore normal vision.

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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: October 16, 2017