Skip to main content

Dear Valued Patient, our office is OPEN and We’re Here for YOU!
We never closed during the COVID-19 shutdown, we just practiced safety protocols.

At Optometric Associates, the health and safety of our patients and employees is our top concern. Our office has a long-standing practice of disinfecting all areas of our office throughout the day, and all clinic areas are disinfected prior to every patient seen.

Our team is committed to the eye health and well-being of our patients and our community. Our office is providing ALL routine eye care services, including eye emergency care, glaucoma management, dry eye management, contact lens examinations, glasses examinations, medication refills, eyeglass repairs, and the dispensing of contact lenses.

Please contact our office at 717-354-2020 or text us prior to your visit to communicate your needs. Because we are running on a slightly reduced clinic schedule, please double check our hours of operation before visiting. Feel free to contact us with any questions. Thank you.

Optometric Associates Team
Menu

Distinction in Eyewear and Eyecare

Request An Appointment
Call Now! 717-356-3561

CMV Retinitis

CMV or cytomegalovirus retinitis is a vision threatening virus that causes inflammation of the retina, primarily in individuals with a compromised immune system, such as those with AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome).

Symptoms of CMV Retinitis

Symptoms of CMV retinitis often appear relatively suddenly. They include general blurriness, seeing flashes or floaters, sudden loss of peripheral (side) vision, or blind spots in central vision. These symptoms all appear as the virus attacks the retina, the light-sensitive layer of nerves at the back of the eye. If left untreated, the virus can cause retinal detachment and will eventually destroy the retina and damage the optic nerve, causing permanent vision loss. Usually there is no pain felt as the retinal damage is taking place. Symptoms usually start in one eye and but can spread to the other eye as well.

Causes of CMV Retinitis

Cytomegalovirus is a herpes type virus that is actually present in most adults. However, most healthy adults never experience any symptoms or problems from the virus. Individuals with a weakened immune system however, such as those with AIDS, chemotherapy or leukemia patients, newborns or the elderly are at greater risk of the virus being activated and spreading throughout the body, including the retina.

Treatment for CMV Retinitis

Treatment includes antiviral medications such as ganciclovir, foscarnet or cidofovir, which can be administered orally, via injection through a vein or directly into the eye or through a time-release implant the releases the medication at intervals. Laser surgery to improve the damaged area of the retina, such as in a retinal detachment, may also be prescribed.

Immune strengthening is also a critical part of preventing and treating CMV retinitis. Individuals with HIV or AIDS may be put on a regimen of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) to boost the immune system and fight the virus. This has been shown to be highly effective in reducing the incidence of CMV retinitis in AIDS patients and reducing the damage for those that are affected.

While these treatments can stop further damage to the retina, any vision that is lost cannot be restored. Further, even if the virus is temporarily stopped, further progression may occur in the future. This is why it is critical to see a retinal specialist on a regular basis if you have had the condition or you are at risk.

Video

Optometric Associates, New Holland, Pa. from David D. Speace on Vimeo.