Squiggly things in eye

Have you ever stared at a solid background and noticed those little squiggly cellular structures floating across the surface of your eyeballs? Most remain still except for the movement caused by moving the eyeball, however, I occasionally spot one that seems to wiggle under its own power. I’ll watch it wiggle around for a while until it finally turns to me and says, “Quit daydreaming about being independently wealthy and get back to work!” Anybody have an explanation for these…whatever they are?

They are called motes or floaters, and are perfectly normal. IIRC they are agglomerations of cells in the matter of the eye which are perceived out of focus.

Cecil covered it here


I’m cursed with 'em. I am forever chasing gnats and bugs that no one else can see, and I no longer even do drugs.

Yeah. Imperfections in the fluid of the eyball, I think I read once. I know it’s a bummer. My father was depressed by it too…

ah, dammit, I can’t keep up this lie any longer! They’re aliens! Aliens, I tells ya! They’re watching us through you! Run! Run to the hi…

:immediately bundled into CIA Fleet Sedan by two large men in suits:

They’re not always harmless.

They can be a symptom of a hole in the retina of the eye, or even a detatched retina.

This Thursday (4/5/01) I was gien my second exam by an opthalmologist for a hole in the retina of my right eye. Lots o’ floaters recently, I assure you.

Fortunately, my eye is healing on it’s own, no surgery needed.

If you have a major problem with floaters, go to an optometrist immediately. He will dialate your eyes for a modest fee & if there is a problem, he will recommend a specialist.

What do you mean by “major problem”? Do you mean if I have a lot of 'em, or sudden appearance of new ones or what? And how do you know if they’re the harmless ones or not? Most of mine seem to go away, but I’ve got one small dark spot just off-center on my right eye; its darker than the others and its been around for a while.

I have floaters too- grrrr…grumble. Pain in the butt things that make me think something is coming at me from my peripheral vision.

And you should see a doc about them, especially if there is one that “has been around for a while.” Generally, most things that are abnormal and incessant should be checked, no matter what they are. Abnormal and occasional? Keep an eye on it (pun intended), other than that, catch a problem at the start, not the end.

ps- my eye examine cost me $75 with no insurance, if you are hard-up, go to the country health center.

That would be ‘County’ not ‘CountRy’


Yeah, I know I need to get 'em checked. My eyesight isn’t quite as sharp as it used to be, so I’ve been putting off The Visit.

Ain’t that a kick? I put it off because I know I need to go…

IANAD, but a sudden appearance of a lot of new ones is a major problem. This could mean a detatched retina, as Bosda mentioned. One treatment for a severe detatchment for that is to make laser cuts on the retina edge, and the scar tissue that forms closes up the space. The floaters then gradually go away.

A small dark spot seems a little different. Get thee to the ophthalmologist! :slight_smile: