Retinal vein occlusions

Retinal vein occlusions

Description, Causes and Risk Factors:

Abbreviation: RVO.

ICD-10: H34.8.

Occlusion of a retinal vein is a common cause of sudden painless reduction in vision in older people. Retinal vein occlusion has a prevalence of 1 to 2% in persons older than 40 years of age and affects 16 million persons worldwide.

It occurs when a blood clot forms in a retinal vein. Blockage of one of the veins draining blood out of the eye causes blood and other fluids to leak into the retina causing bruising and swelling as well as lack of oxygen. This interferes with the light receptor cells and reduces vision.

The exact cause of this event is generally unknown but a number of common conditions increase the risk of retinal vein occlusion occurring. These include:

    High blood pressure (HBP).

  • High cholesterol.

  • Glaucoma.

  • Diabetes.

  • Smoking.

  • Age related vascular disease.

  • Blood disorders.

  • Raised intraocular pressure.

  • Inflammatory diseases such as sarcoidosis, Beh


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