Home 9 Your Eye Health 9 Eye Conditions 9 CMV Retinitis
Home » Your Eye Health » Eye Conditions » CMV Retinitis

CMV Retinitis

CMV or cytomegalovirus retinitis is a vision threatening virus that causes inflammation of the retina, primarily in individuals with a compromised immune system, such as those with AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome).

Symptoms of CMV Retinitis

Symptoms of CMV retinitis often appear relatively suddenly. They include general blurriness, seeing flashes or floaters, sudden loss of peripheral (side) vision, or blind spots in central vision. These symptoms all appear as the virus attacks the retina, the light-sensitive layer of nerves at the back of the eye. If left untreated, the virus can cause retinal detachment and will eventually destroy the retina and damage the optic nerve, causing permanent vision loss. Usually there is no pain felt as the retinal damage is taking place. Symptoms usually start in one eye and but can spread to the other eye as well.

Causes of CMV Retinitis

Cytomegalovirus is a herpes type virus that is actually present in most adults. However, most healthy adults never experience any symptoms or problems from the virus. Individuals with a weakened immune system however, such as those with AIDS, chemotherapy or leukemia patients, newborns or the elderly are at greater risk of the virus being activated and spreading throughout the body, including the retina.

Treatment for CMV Retinitis

Treatment includes antiviral medications such as ganciclovir, foscarnet or cidofovir, which can be administered orally, via injection through a vein or directly into the eye or through a time-release implant the releases the medication at intervals. Laser surgery to improve the damaged area of the retina, such as in a retinal detachment, may also be prescribed.

Immune strengthening is also a critical part of preventing and treating CMV retinitis. Individuals with HIV or AIDS may be put on a regimen of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) to boost the immune system and fight the virus. This has been shown to be highly effective in reducing the incidence of CMV retinitis in AIDS patients and reducing the damage for those that are affected.

While these treatments can stop further damage to the retina, any vision that is lost cannot be restored. Further, even if the virus is temporarily stopped, further progression may occur in the future. This is why it is critical to see a retinal specialist on a regular basis if you have had the condition or you are at risk.

Schedule an Appointment
Patient History Form
InfantSEE® Form
Contact Form
Testimonials

first rate

Caring and prompt, the service is always first rate.
Patient in Warrensburg MO

I wish all doctors were modeled after him

I see Dr. Kyle Johnson and he is awesome. He takes the time to answer all of my questions and concerns and I believe he truly cares. I have never seen him without a smile and kind, compassionate, positive attitude. I wish all doctors were modeled after him. You won’t be sorry, if you choose to see him. The office staff are all very polite, professional, and efficient.
Patient In Clinton, MO

I see a lot of doctors, but Dr.Susan is the only one I look forward to seeing each year

Everyone in the office is extremely nice. I am 72 yrs. old and a long time patient with only one good eye. I trust Dr. Susan Lake with the care of it 100%. Being 72, I see a lot of doctors, but Dr.Susan is the only one I look forward to seeing each year.
Patient in Warrensburg MO

I highly recommend them

I’ve been going to Dr. Liesemeyer for almost 25 years. His group offers personal and professional services I highly recommend them.
Patient In Sedalia, MO