Vitreomacular traction syndrome, or VMT, is an eye condition that can cause symptoms ranging from mild blurry vision, to distorted and darkened central vision.
The center of the eye is filled with vitreous humor — a clear, gel-like substance that lies between the lens (near the front of the eye) and the retina, the light-sensitive, inner lining of the inside of the eye. The vitreous contains millions of tiny intertwined fibers that are connected to the retina from birth and throughout our younger years.
As we age, the vitreous slowly liquefies, shrinks and gradually separates from the retinal surface. This normal aging process is called Posterior Vitreous Detachment, or PVD.
Sometimes, the vitreous gel’s fibers adhere in an abnormally strong manner, not allowing the vitreous to properly pull away from the macula, the part of the retina responsible for central vision. The resulting “tug” on the macula causes changes in its shape and anatomy, preventing its ability to properly process incoming light rays. This condition, Vitreomacular Traction, can make it difficult to do daily tasks that require sharp vision, such as reading or watching television.
Often, the adherent vitreous will free itself and the macula will return to its normal condition. In rare cases, the undo stress at the point of the vitreous adhesion creates a macular hole, further distorting and darkening the central vision. If this happens, surgical intervention may be required in order to reduce the likelihood of permanent vision loss.