Cassatt (Cataracts, Diabetic Retinopathy)

Cezanne (Myopia)

Degas (Retinopathy)

El Greco (Astigmatism?)

Monet (Cataracts)

Rembrandt (Visual Aging)

Renoir (Myopia)

Van Gogh (Xanthopsia?)






What is retinopathy?

Retinopathy is a term that refers to non-inflammatory retinal abnormality. Retinal degeneration and retinal detachment are forms of retinopathy. Causes of retinal degeneration may be hereditary, such as retinitis pigmentosa, or may be a comorbid factor of another disease, such as diabetes. Individuals with hypertension or a history of intravenous drug use are also susceptible to developing retinopathy. Symptoms of retinopathy include blurred vision, color disturbances, and loss of night vision. Patients with retinopathy often experience a blind spot in their visual field, called a scotoma.


How does retinopathy affect vision?

The retina is a network of cells at the back of the eye that converts images from the optical system into electrical impulses that are transmitted through the optic nerve to the brain. Rod and cone cells are two types receptor cells found in the retina. Cones are light-sensitive cells that deliver sharp visual acuity and color discrimination. Rods are specialized to work at low levels of light, especially for night vision. When retinal abnormality occurs, the function of retinal cells is disturbed, and visual perception is altered in a manner similar to depicted below.

Below is a simulation of vision with retinal abnormality. Notice the scotomas and poor acuity in the view with retinopathy compared to the normal view.


No treatment is available for retinitis pigmentosa. A detached retina can be reattached to the pigment epithelium with a laser, if detected early enough. There are several treatments for diabetic retinopathy, depending on the stage of the disease. Treatments for diabetic retinopathy include laser photocoagulation, panretinal photocoagulation, and vitrectomy.


Cassatt | Cézanne | Degas | El Greco | Monet | Rembrandt | Renoir | Van Gogh