Type Of Recent Vision Loss

What Causes Central Vision Loss?

Central vision loss can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'needs attention' to 'generally fatal'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose central vision loss, we could:

  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "central vision loss" as a symptom.  Here are six possibilities:
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa
  • Brain Tumor
  • Glaucoma
  • Pituitary Tumor
  • Stroke Risk
  • Macular Degeneration

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
major steroid use
African ethnicity
rapid pulse rate
history of anorexia
high sensitivity to bright light
being blind or nearly blind
gradual decline in speaking ability
inability to use arm(s)
having excess body fat
much reduced sense of taste
brain cancer
history of brain cancer
... and more than 20 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of central vision loss:
Cause Probability Status
Retinitis Pigmentosa 99% Confirm
Pituitary Tumor 65% Possible
Brain Tumor 27% Unlikely
Glaucoma 4% Ruled out
Macular Degeneration 1% Ruled out
Stroke Risk 1% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate eye problems, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
If you have suffered any loss of vision within the past few years, how would you describe it?
Possible responses:
→ Not applicable / long time ago / don't know
→ General vision loss
→ Mainly central (foveal) vision loss
→ Mainly outer (peripheral) vision loss
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate general vision loss, central vision loss or peripheral vision loss, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Brain Tumor

Loss of vision in one or both eyes is especially notable if it is peripheral vision loss.

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