Peripheral blurred vision one eye: 11 Causes of Blurry Vision in One Eye

11 Causes of Blurry Vision in One Eye

Dr. Russel Lazarus, March 8, 2022

Are you experiencing blurry vision in just one eye? This could be a sign of a serious eye condition.

While blurry vision is often associated with a need for eyeglasses or a new optical prescription, monocular blurry vision can signal a more serious condition that requires immediate attention.

Blurry vision that comes on suddenly or appears only in one eye can be a sign of a medical emergency and should be evaluated immediately by an eye doctor or another medical professional.

Here are six emergencies that can cause blurry vision in one eye:

1. Stroke

Blurry vision in one or both eyes can occur when a stroke affects the visual areas of the brain. Seek immediate medical attention if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms along with blurry vision:

  • Severe headache
  • Disorientation
  • Difficulty speaking or understanding speech
  • Imbalance or walking issues
  • Numbness or tingling in extremities, especially on one side

2. Retinal detachment

Retinal detachment is an eye emergency that occurs when the retina is pulled away from its normal position on the back wall of the eye.

This sight-threatening condition generally results in a sudden onset of blurred vision, along with:

  • Flashes of light or eye floaters that move across your vision
  • Decreased peripheral vision
  • Appearance of a shadow or curtain in your visual field

3. Brain tumor

Brain tumors can put pressure on the visual processing areas of the brain and cause blurry vision, as well as other visual changes.

Other signs of a brain tumor include:

  • Persistent headaches
  • Confusion or difficulty concentrating
  • Memory loss
  • Trouble speaking
  • Weakness of one side of the body
  • Balance and coordination issues

4. Closed-angle glaucoma

Closed-angle glaucoma is an eye emergency that occurs when ocular fluid cannot drain properly, resulting in a sudden buildup of intraocular pressure. The elevated pressure presses on the optic nerve, causing permanent damage and vision loss, usually in one eye.

Other signs of closed-angle glaucoma include:

  • Headache
  • Severe eye pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Seeing halos around lights

5. Wet macular degeneration

Macular degeneration (AMD) is a sight-threatening eye condition that affects the macula, the center of the retina, responsible for central vision and vision for fine details.

There are two forms of macular degeneration: dry and wet.

In the wet form, one eye may suddenly experience a bleed or leakage of fluid, resulting in an immediate loss of vision in that eye – this is an eye emergency.

One of the first signs of AMD is blurry vision in one or both eyes.

Other signs of AMD include:

  • Appearance of dark or blind spots in your central vision
  • Wavy vision or other visual distortions in your central vision
  • Difficulty reading and driving
  • Trouble with facial recognition
  • Inability to see fine details

6. Diabetic retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is a serious eye condition that affects people with diabetes. It develops when elevated blood sugar levels remain high for long periods of time, damaging the tiny blood vessels throughout the body, including in the retina.

When the retinal blood vessels become damaged, they begin to leak fluid, resulting in retinal swelling and blurred vision.

Other signs of diabetic retinopathy include:

  • Double vision
  • Seeing floaters in your field of vision
  • Increasing dark spots in your field of vision
  • Poor night vision

SEE RELATED: Why Is There Excess Fluid in My Eye?

Contact an eye doctor near you if you are experiencing blurry vision or any other visual changes.  

Find a Vision Therapy Eye Doctor Near You

5 less-urgent causes of blurry vision in one eye:

While the following causes don’t usually require an emergency trip to the eye doctor, treatment is still necessary to prevent any complications.

1. Conjunctivitis (pink eye)

Conjunctivitis, commonly known as pink eye, is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the thin membrane that covers the white part of the eye and lines the inner eyelids. It can occur in one or both eyes, and while mild cases don’t usually impact vision, more serious cases can result in blurry vision.

Other symptoms of pink eye include:

  • Whites of the eye appear red or pink
  • Itching or burning in the eye
  • Swollen eyelids
  • Gritty sensation in the eye
  • Excessive tearing
  • Discharge from the eye

2. Other eye infections

Many different eye infections can result when bacteria, viruses or fungi enter the eye. Any of these infections can lead to blurry vision.

Common eye infections that result in blurry vision include:

  • Covid-19
  • Endophthalmitis
  • Keratitis
  • Optic neuritis
  • Ocular herpes
  • Uveitis

3. Retinal migraine     

A retinal migraine causes blurry vision and temporary blindness in one eye that usually lasts less than one hour. It can precede a headache or appear during, or after a headache.

4. Cataract

A cataract is the clouding of the eye’s naturally transparent lens, resulting in blurry vision in that eye. Although cataracts generally develop in both eyes, the clouding of the lens can occur at different rates, causing a difference in severity of blurred vision between the two eyes.

Other signs of a cataract include:

  • Sensitivity to glare from sunlight, bulbs, headlights
  • Seeing halos around lights
  • Poor night vision
  • Colors appearing less vibrant
  • Double vision

5. Eye strain

Eye strain is often a symptom of excessive screen time or a prolonged near vision activity. Eye strain often leads to other uncomfortable symptoms, including:

  • Blurry vision
  • Headache
  • Eye fatigue
  • Dry eyes
  • Neck and shoulder pain

LEARN MORE: Guide to Eye Health  

If you are experiencing blurry vision, schedule an eye exam to determine the cause and learn about treatment options. 

Blurry vision in one eye is a common symptom with a number of possible causes.

Seek immediate medical attention if you experience a sudden onset of blurry vision or any other symptoms that signal a medical emergency.

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8 ‘Do Not Ignore’ Warning Signs of Serious Eye Problems »

Eye Floaters: Should I Worry?

Dr. Russel Lazarus, February 11, 2021

Eye floaters can be a sign of serious disease, but now eye doctors can successfully treat with a range of very effective options.

What are eye floaters?

Eye floaters are small spots that can appear in a variety of shapes and shadows. They tend to drift or “float” through the visual field, and have the tendency to become even more noticeable after looking at a bright image or walking to the outside from indoors.

It is estimated that around 30 percent of the population notice eye floaters, yet the impact of this common visual problem on our quality of life remains hugely underestimated.

Though floaters may be irritating, they generally become less noticeable overtime, and they should not interfere with your clarity of vision.

However, if eye floaters start to bother you or affect your quality of life your eye doctor may be able to help you.

If you have floaters, you may see:

  • Spots
  • Squiggly lines
  • Thread-like strands
  • Small shadowy shapes
  • Black or very dark spots

If eye floaters come on suddenly or change in shape or size, or you suddenly begin to see flashes in your visual field, contact your eye doctor immediately, as this may a sign of a serious retinal disease.

What causes eye floaters?

Floaters are made up of tiny pieces of protein, called collagen, that break off of the vitreous, or the jelly-like substance located in the back of the eye.

Posterior vitreous detachment (PVD)

As we age, the vitreous inside the eye begins to shrink and detach itself from the retina, this is called posterior vitreous detachment (PVD).

PVD is the most common cause of floaters and occurs when tiny fibers of collagen break away from the vitreous and join together, casting shadows onto the retina— and manifesting as floaters in your visual field.

Floaters can appear at any age, but typically begin to occur between ages 50 and 75. People who are nearsighted or who have undergone cataract surgery are more likely to experience floaters.

In rare cases, floaters can also result from:

  • Eye injury
  • Eye disease
  • Eye tumors
  • Diabetic retinopathy

Serious eye conditions that can cause floaters include:

  • Retinal detachment
  • Retinal tear
  • Bleeding in the vitreous
  • Inflamed vitreous or retina
  • Eye tumors

If you suspect you have an eye condition, contact an eye doctor near you, who can diagnose and treat the condition.

SEE RELATED: The 4 Frequent Eye Conditions

Find an eye doctor near you

When should I worry about eye floaters?

Contact your eye doctor immediately if you notice any of the following symptoms: 

  • A sudden and dramatic increase in the number of floaters
  • Flashes of light
  • Loss of peripheral vision
  • Progressive changes to your vision
  • Eye pain

The sooner you receive medical care, the greater your chances of protecting your vision and preventing vision loss. 

How can I get rid of floaters?

Floaters are a common occurrence and are a part of the natural aging process. If they begin to get on your nerves, believe it or not, moving your eyes up and down can make floaters disappear, at least temporarily.

Shifting your eyes up and down helps to move the eye fluid around and consequently, the collagen fibers as well.

In most cases, if floaters are not disrupting your quality of life, there is no need to treat them. 

However, if floaters begin to affect your vision clarity, your eye doctor may recommend a surgical procedure called a vitrectomy. This procedure involves removing the vitreous and replacing it with a specific saline solution.

It is important to be aware though, that while uncommon, this surgery can pose some risks to your vision, such as:

  • Retinal detachment
  • Retinal tear
  • Cataracts

If you notice floaters in your visual field, you can rest assured that in most cases, they are not a cause for concern. 

LEARN MORE:  Guide to Eye Conditions

It is always a good idea to schedule an eye exam if you experience any type of vision changes to rule out any serious eye conditions.

Keeping up with your regular eye exams is the best way to protect your eyes and to ensure a lifetime of good eye health and vision.

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Eye Floaters: Should I Worry? »

90,000 peripheral vision – violations, diagnosis and treatment

ago to all articles

violations of peripheral (lateral) vision

Causes of tunnel vision

Symptoms of tunnel vision

by what signs can I recognize impaired peripheral vision?

Peripheral vision lost. What to do? Diagnosis of peripheral vision disorders

Treatment of peripheral vision disorders

When surgery is required for loss of peripheral vision

Prevention of tunnel vision

Is it possible to improve peripheral vision by 100%?

Is it possible to cure carpal tunnel on my own?

Peripheral vision is made possible by the work of retinal photoreceptor cells, cones and rods. The space in the zone of our visibility is called the field of view, and the areas outside this zone are peripheral areas, into which objects fall, on which the main attention is not concentrated. For example, when we look straight ahead, and with peripheral vision we notice some kind of movement or person.

Central vision, on the contrary, is responsible for the visibility zone directly in front of us, the ability to clearly see both near and distant objects if a person does not have refractive anomalies – myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism.

Peripheral (lateral) vision disorders

One of the common pathologies among peripheral vision disorders is tunnel vision. This anomaly occurs as a result of pathological changes in the lateral parts of the retina.

Tunnel vision syndrome is a condition in which a person is unable to see with peripheral vision. The view is possible only with the central vision, and the visible field turns into a kind of tunnel, where the view is closed on the periphery.

Tunnel vision syndrome can occur for several reasons. Among them, an overdose of illegal psychotropic substances is called, which can affect visual function as well. Also, the prerequisites include prolonged oxygen starvation, poisoning with nitrogen fumes, chronic stress, sudden pressure drops.

Other pathologies of peripheral vision can also be associated with damage to the retina as a result of trauma, foreign objects entering the eye, and impacts. All this can provoke retinal detachment, in which a person begins to lose vision from the periphery.

Brain diseases can also affect peripheral vision due to injuries, concussions, and oncological pathologies.

Causes of tunnel vision

  • Progressive open-angle glaucoma.
  • Eye injuries.
  • Pathological changes in the retina, which are usually caused by heredity.
  • Cataract development.
  • Damage to the optic nerve.
  • Inflammation, infectious and inflammatory eye diseases.

Symptoms of tunnel vision

The syndrome manifests itself quite clearly, and the person immediately understands that there are obvious vision problems. Lateral visual zones can narrow either gradually or in some cases abruptly, for example, with retinal detachment.

First, it will be more difficult for a person to distinguish objects from the side: they will become blurry and fuzzy, or they will simply be practically impossible to distinguish. Secondly, visual acuity will noticeably decrease at dusk and at night. Thirdly, so-called “scotomas” may appear in the field of view – dark circles, which are the clearest signs of a serious lesion of the optic nerve.

One of the eloquent indicators of peripheral vision impairment is that it becomes almost impossible for a person to read a book. Trying to read printed text causes discomfort. Drivers, in order to see the obstacle on the right, need to turn their heads to notice another motorist. Therefore, tunnel vision syndrome is especially dangerous for drivers, people working in production.

Peripheral vision lost. What to do? Diagnosis of peripheral vision disorders

At the first signs of peripheral vision problems, it is important to see an ophthalmologist as soon as possible. To prevent loss of lateral vision, it is necessary to check with an optometrist at least once a year in order to detect the development of eye pathologies at an early stage.

Diagnosis of peripheral visual impairment includes physical examination of the patient using a slit lamp. In addition to the standard examination, a comprehensive vision diagnostics is required, which will reveal objective indicators of the state of the visual system.

The list of diagnostic measures, as a rule, includes perimetry, a study that determines the presence of loss of areas of the peripheral visibility zone, tonometry, measurement of ophthalmotonus to exclude the presence of glaucoma, ophthalmoscopy, assessment of the fundus. The ophthalmologist also checks visual acuity using special tables and a modern device – an autorefractometer.

The ophthalmologist examines the diagnostic data and anamnesis, after which he prescribes an effective treatment for the patient. In no case should you self-medicate and delay a visit to an ophthalmologist. This can lead to a worsening of the situation, the progression of possible eye diseases.

Treatment of peripheral vision disorders

The treatment of tunnel vision syndrome in most cases is lengthy and time-consuming. During this period, it is important to ensure the safety of the patient at home and at work: remove dangerous objects that a person may not notice with peripheral vision. For example, knives, sharp corners, any other piercing and cutting objects.

If the patient drives a car, it is best to limit or completely avoid driving during treatment. Otherwise, there is a risk of accidents. As a pedestrian, you also need to be careful. It is better that a close person helps the patient to cross the road, who will make sure that it is safe to cross the street and that a car does not rush from the side.

Peripheral vision disorders can be treated with medication and physiotherapy. In extreme cases, surgery may be required.

As a means of drug therapy, the doctor may prescribe drugs aimed at eliminating puffiness, improving blood circulation in the organ of vision, normalizing intraocular pressure, the work of the optic nerve, and improving metabolic processes in the tissues of the eye. Drip therapy can help improve peripheral vision.

When surgery is required for peripheral vision loss

Surgery for tunnel vision is indicated if the patient has an indication. As a surgical method, laser vision correction can be prescribed, which is carried out on modern laser equipment for fifteen minutes in both eyes. Laser correction is highly effective, gives a predictable result and is characterized by a short rehabilitation period without significant changes in the patient’s lifestyle.

Physiotherapeutic methods are also used to restore the visual functions of peripheral vision. These include electro and magnetostimulating technologies for influencing the optic nerve. Scientists are developing special glasses that improve peripheral vision.

Prevention of tunnel vision

The most important prevention of pathologies of the organ of vision, reducing its sharpness is regular observation by an ophthalmologist. This is especially true for people with myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, as well as patients older than 40-45 years. It is at this age that the risks of developing cataracts, glaucoma, and retinal diseases increase several times due to age-related changes in the body.

For prevention, it is important to exclude bad habits from life: smoking, alcohol. You need to lead an active lifestyle, play sports, include in the diet a variety of foods rich in vitamins, trace elements that are useful for the normal functioning of the visual system.

Is it possible to improve peripheral vision by 100%?

The ability to fully restore peripheral vision depends on the cause that caused the pathological processes. In most clinical situations, with timely treatment, lateral visibility zones are restored.

Can carpal tunnel be cured on my own?

You cannot get rid of tunnel vision syndrome on your own. Attempts to self-medicate will only aggravate the situation and lead to even greater vision problems. At the first symptoms, you need to contact an ophthalmologist in a specialized eye clinic.

Reduced visual acuity: causes of fuzzy, blurry vision, drops for treatment.

From Aimee Rodrigues; reviewed by Brian Chou, OD

Blurred vision refers to loss of visual acuity, making objects look blurry and blurry.

The main causes of blurred vision are refractive errors – nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism – and presbyopia. However, blurry vision can also be a symptom of a more serious problem, including a potentially sight-threatening eye disease or neurological disorder.

Blurry vision can affect both eyes, but some people experience blurry vision in only one eye.

Blurred vision, in which objects are hard to see and appear “whitish,” is very similar to blurred vision. Blurred vision is usually a symptom of diseases such as cataracts.

Both blurred vision and blurred vision can be symptoms of serious eye disease, especially if they appear suddenly.

To determine if you have blurry vision and what causes it, see an optometrist for a comprehensive eye examination.

NEED AN EYE EXAM? Find an optometrist nearby and make an appointment.

Blurry vision: causes and treatment

Myopia: Symptoms of myopia (nearsightedness) include strabismus, eye strain, headaches, and blurry vision in one or both eyes. Myopia is the most common refractive error, in which objects at a distance appear fuzzy.

Glasses, contact lenses and refractive surgery such as LASIK and PRK are the most common ways to correct myopia.

Hypermetropia: If you have hypermetropia (farsightedness), distant objects appear clear, but your eyes cannot properly focus on near objects—or looking at such objects causes unusual eye strain and fatigue. In the case of severe farsightedness, even distant objects may look fuzzy.

As with myopia, hypermetropia can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses or refractive eye surgery.

Astigmatism: blurry vision at any distance is often a symptom of astigmatism. Astigmatism is a refractive error and is usually caused by an irregular shape of the cornea.

With astigmatism, light rays do not focus at one point on the retina to form clear vision, regardless of the distance the object is from the eyes.

Astigmatism, like nearsightedness and farsightedness, can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery.

Presbyopia: If you are in your 40s and start noticing blurry near vision—for example, when reading a text message, restaurant menu, food label, or other small print—it is most likely due to the onset of presbyopia , a common age-related vision problem.

Although the symptoms of presbyopia are the same as those of hypermetropia (blurred near vision; eye strain when reading), presbyopia is an age-related loss of the ability to focus on nearby objects due to decreased elasticity of the lens of the eye.

Common treatments for presbyopia include progressive lenses, multifocal contact lenses, bifocals, and reading glasses. In addition, there are options for surgical correction of presbyopia, including inlay lenses, presbyLASIK, and conductive keratoplasty.

All glasses designed to correct refractive errors and presbyopia can be enhanced with anti-reflective coatings and photochromic lenses for greater clarity and comfort. For more information, contact your optometrist.

Above is an image of a Jack Russell Terrier with normal vision, while the blurry photo in the middle shows what the dog might look like to a nearsighted person. Below, the image is fuzzy and hazy, as it might be seen by a person with a cataract.

An image of a Jack Russell Terrier as seen by a person with blurry vision.

An image of a Jack Russell Terrier that is blurry and hazy, showing how a person with a cataract sees it.

Chronic dry eyes: Dry eye syndrome can affect the eyes in many ways, including causing variable, blurry vision. Tear substitutes (lubricating eye drops) can help with this condition, but severe cases of dry eyes may require prescription drugs or punctal obturators to keep the eyes comfortable and healthy and maintain good vision.

Pregnancy: Blurred vision often occurs during pregnancy and is sometimes accompanied by double vision (diplopia). Hormonal changes can change the shape and thickness of the cornea, resulting in blurry vision. In addition, dry eyes are common in pregnant women, which can cause blurry vision.

All vision problems during pregnancy should always be reported to the optometrist you see. Although blurry vision is not always a serious symptom, in some cases it can be an indicator of gestational diabetes or high blood pressure.

Eye migraines or migraine headaches: Usually harmless and temporary, blurred vision, flickering light, halos and zigzag patterns are common symptoms before the onset of an ocular migraine or migraine headache.

Floating flies in the eyes: Vision may be blurred by temporary black dots or floating flies floating in your field of vision. Floaters in the eye usually appear when the gel-like vitreous body of the eye begins to thin with age, allowing microscopic pieces of tissue to float freely in the vitreous inside the eye, creating shadows on the retina.

A sudden burst of floating “flies” in the eyes may indicate a tear or detachment of the retina, and you should immediately contact an optometrist.

Blurry vision after LASIK: Vision may be blurry or blurry immediately after LASIK or any other type of refractive surgery. Visual clarity will usually improve within a few days, but vision may take longer to fully stabilize.

Eye drops and medicines: Some eye drops—especially eye drops that contain preservatives—may cause irritation and blurred vision.

In addition, some medicines, such as allergy pills, can cause side effects such as dry eyes and blurred vision. During a comprehensive eye exam, your optometrist can advise you on whether any of the medications you are taking may be causing blurry vision.

Wearing contact lenses for too long: Wearing disposable contact lenses (and indeed any contact lenses) for longer than prescribed by the optometrist will cause proteins and other impurities in the tear film to deposit on the lenses . This can result in blurry vision and increase the risk of eye infections.

Blurry vision can be a symptom of a serious eye disease

If you suddenly develop blurry vision in one eye and are in your 60s, you may have a macular hole in the central area of ​​your retina.

Sudden blurred vision can also be a symptom of retinal detachment, ocular herpes, or optic neuritis (inflammation of the optic nerve).

Certain ocular conditions such as those listed below can cause permanent loss of vision, so it is important to see an optometrist for diagnosis and treatment if you suddenly experience blurry vision.

Cataracts: Changes in vision, such as blurred or blurred vision, and glare and halos around lights at night can be symptoms of cataracts. Untreated cataracts can gradually worsen and lead to loss of vision up to blindness. But replacing the cataract with an artificial lens during cataract surgery is very successful in restoring lost vision.

Glaucoma: Blurred vision or “tunnel vision” may be a symptom of glaucoma. Without treatment, vision will continue to deteriorate and may lead to permanent blindness.

Age-related macular degeneration: Blurry vision and distortion of visual perception, where straight lines appear wavy or interrupted, may be symptoms of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which is a leading cause of blindness among older people.

Diabetic retinopathy: If you have diabetes, unexplained blurry vision may be due to the onset of diabetic retinopathy, a vision-threatening disease that damages the retina of the eye.

Cardiovascular disease and other systemic diseases: Blurry vision, often associated with double vision, may be a symptom of an emergency such as a stroke or cerebral haemorrhage. It can also be an early sign of multiple sclerosis. If you suddenly develop blurry vision or double vision, contact your optometrist immediately.