12th July, 20212 min read

What is a vitreous haemorrhage?

Medical reviewer:
Dr Adiele Hoffman
Dr Adiele Hoffman
Dr Ann Nainan
Dr Ann Nainan
Last reviewed: 13/07/2021
Medically reviewed

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In this article

What is a vitreous haemorrhage?

A vitreous haemorrhage is bleeding into the clear jelly-like area, called the vitreous humour, at the back of your eyes.

The bleeding may be caused by an eye injury or a condition, like diabetes, that causes blood vessel damage.

What are the symptoms of a vitreous haemorrhage?

A vitreous haemorrhage typically only affects 1 eye. When it happens, you may not be able to see properly through the affected eye, although how bad your vision gets can vary from person to person. For some people, the bleeding makes their vision a bit hazy, but others may not be able to see at all.

It’s also common to see floaters – small dots or squiggly lines in your vision – when you have a vitreous haemorrhage.

How is a vitreous haemorrhage treated?

Treatments for a vitreous haemorrhage aim to stop the bleeding and repair the damage.

Common treatments may include:

  • removing the part of the eye you’ve bled into – a procedure called a vitrectomy
  • using lasers to stop the bleeding and repair the back of your eye (retina)
  • keeping you under review to make sure your symptoms improve once the bleeding stops
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