What Is a Weiss Ring Floater?

Before we get into knowing what Weiss ring floater is, let’s understand what floaters mean and which body part they affect us. Floaters are basically debris that hovers around the vitreous humor. It’s a gel like matter that resides between our retina and the lens of our eye. They have been reported amongst individuals as young as 9 years old. Any kind of eye damage that causes materials to enter our vitreous humor can give rise to floaters.

As such, floaters are harmless and do not pose grave health risks. Some floaters might stay in your vision, while most of them will fade away on their own over a period of time. However, in some cases they can cause great disturbance in your life as they can be hugely annoying. Also, if the floaters spread abruptly, then one needs to examine the condition to rule out any abnormality such as retinal tear.

Talking about Weiss ring floater, it’s a type of floater that is usually larger in size in comparison to other floaters affecting human beings. Weiss ring floaters make way into our lives when the vitreous tissue surrounding the optic nerve gets separated from the back of the eye. Typically, Weiss ring floater appears like a big ring shaped floater which is seen clearly against light background. The large size of the Weiss ring floater makes it more annoying than the regular floaters. A person experiencing this condition for the first time might get hugely bothered due to the intimidating size. Not to forget the fact that Weiss ring floaters affects one of most sensitive body organs-eyes.

As mentioned earlier, it’s imperative for one to seek medical attention if the floaters show indication of rapid spread. Retinal tear due to the spread of Weiss ring floaters can be damaging for our eyes. Although the cases of vision damage are rare, one can’t afford to take any risk over here. As such, there are many measures out there that can help one deal with Weiss ring floaters. One of the most talked about measures of handling Weiss ring floaters is laser surgery. Needless to say, this method is expensive, but effective and it offers one quick result in comparison to other remedies out there in the market.

Reports suggest that the success rate of a particular floater cure depends hugely upon the type of floater one is suffering from. The success rate with Weiss ring floaters is said to be 95%. That being said, there are certain risks associated with the treatment. In one such incident at South Florida Eye Clinic nearly 4000 patients were treated for floaters. Amongst these patients, eight patients showcased intraocular pressure rise and about six of them experienced small micro-hemorrhages in the choroid. Although these conditions were treated effectively with further medications, one can’t undermine the fact that the risk factor does exist to a certain extent. As such, some experts suggest against the removal of floaters unless required, due to the adverse effects associated with the treatment.

Comments 14
  1. I just saw my ophthalmologist and was told I had a wife's ring floater. Obviously, however, I misunderstood and now see that it's a Weiss ring. This article well explained what floaters are and how they will, in time, go away. I wish it were clearer about that "go away" process, whether it's a re-absorption or something else. Also, how does a Weiss floater tear the eye's retina? Presumably it's because of its larger size, but this could be made more clear. While my doctor has me on Bromday for 3 to 4 weeks (at which point a return visit/examination), it was interesting to see that Weiss rings are sometimes handled with laser surgery. I'm guessing that my doctor believes my particular case presents no long-term problem so long as the Bromday does its job and the floater "goes away" (hence there was no mention of surgery.

    Thank you for the information.

  2. I just experienced this condition and saw my doctor. Your article helped to fill in what my doctor advised.

  3. This article helped reassure me that this is not as bad as I thought when I was diagnosed yesterday. My doctor would not answer whether or not this would go away, so I now have some hope.

  4. Experienced my first Weiss Ring floater last year the day after my yearly eye exam. Experiencing the flashes of light prior to the Weiss Ring appearing was scary and disturbing. The day after my yearly eye exam this year – just a few days ago, I began experiencing the flashes of light in my opposite eye and this morning woke up with a couple of larger Weiss Rings in that eye. So now I have these large floaters in both eyes and they crisscross in my field of vision. Very depressing… on my way to my optometrist to check for any tears. 🙁 Thank you for your article. It reassured me that this does happen, although I am not happy with this, it was nice finding an article that relates to my experience. My optometrist had never heard of a Weiss Ring before I mentioned it!

  5. Have been experiencing a PVD in right eye the last 3 months. With small floaters and flashing. 3 days ago flashing increased and I now have a Weiss ring that flies into and out of central vision like it is on a bungee cord. I wouldn't wish this on anyone… It makes reading and driving very difficult. I am praying this ring moves to the bottom or away from retina over the next few weeks/months. I know same can happen in left eye and the thought is horrifying. I am 59 years old. Near-sighted but 20/20 with contacts in.

  6. What causes a Weiss floater? I am experiencing a partial ring floater in one eye a day after my annual eye exam. It’s shaped like crescent. Would a pressure test during an eye exam cause a Weiss floater? My Doctor will re-examine my eye in 3 weeks to check on any further progress.

  7. Linda, you're myopic and thus have a less "round" shape to your eye. Because of this, us myopics are more at risk for developing floaters, PVD, & retinal detachment (though retinal detachment is rare). I have hundreds of floaters in all shapes, sizes, and shades. Have had them for 30 years and just got a bunch of new bad ones due to a recent PVD. I'm probably rare in how many I have. Many will fade and/or move to the periphery, I'm sure… just as the others did in the past. Even if some stay somewhat dark or don't move all the way to the periphery, you'll adjust. It just takes time. 🙂

  8. I want to thank all of you for your notes. I had cataract surgery 2 months ago. It's the best I've seen since I was a child. My cataract was very dense. I thought I was going blind in that eye. I have worn glasses since I was a child. I woke up today and was staring out the window. I noticed this huge circle in my eye. I was beyond terrified. I got up and I called my husband. I have been hysterical. I called my doctor and my retinologist. He could not see me and my doctor is on vacation. I spoke with two of the girls who know my case. I'm seeing her partner in the morning. I am sure from looking I have a Weiss Ring floater. I can't stand it. They have to get it off my eye. I have calmed down a lot since reading your posts. I can't thank you enough. Knowing there are meds to treat it and I don't have to jump into surgery unless it is the cause of a retina Tear, God forbid. I have so many issues health wise. Thank you Christian Schwoerke. You have saved my tears until tomorrow. God Bless you. Amen! Xo

  9. I have Weiss Ring floaters in both eyes. They are very large and very annoying, and I have had both of them for more than 3 years. I was also told that they might reduce or break up over time, but they have not done that. These floaters are a true detriment to my clear vision, but at the same time I am grateful that I can still see quite well enough to function and enjoy life's wonders. When I am driving the way they move across my vision frequently fools me into thinking there is something there that isn't actually there, moving in my periphery. I am seeing an eye specialist next week to discuss this and other problems with my vision.

  10. I walked into the house and noticed a black dot in my vision. Ignored it at first and thought I am just tired of the day's work and seeing stuff. Woke up Saturday morning and noticed it is still there. Ignored it the whole of Saturday, with concern. Sunday morning, this this is still there. Now I was really concerned. I then Googeled "black spot in eye" and it lead me to this article. The article helped calm me down, but did little for my depression. I could just cry!! I have never experienced this before. The article is brilliant, but could explain a little more regarding how it occurs and what treatments are available? When you say it will go away, after how long period will it disappear? Do I take meds for it to go away? Can it only be removed with laser surgery? If there is meds available, how quickly does it kick into action or how long before this this is gone? It is terribly irritating and annoying! I hate it… The article really helped and everyone's testimony helped even more as I now know I am not the ONLY one with this problem. Thank you, but I need more information w.r.t. treating it and making it go away…

  11. I had Yag laser surgery on May 26 to correct the fogginess on my lens from cataract surgery. The next morning I woke up with a big round grey spot that seemed to move whenever I moved my eye. It was quite bothersome, especially while trying to read. I went yesterday, June 17 for a recheck on the Yag and the ophthalmologist told me I have a Weiss Ring Posterior Vitreous Detachment in that eye. The doctor drew a picture of it for me and showed me what most peoples looks like that have it as well as what mine looks like. Mine looks very squiggly and almost half of my eyeball inside is affected. The doctor told me to be still and quiet making no sudden moves this weekend and to see a retina doctor Monday morning. Told me to call the office immediately if my vision in that eye changes at all. It scared me somewhat but this article seemed to explain a little more and made me feel a little better. Thank you for the article and comments. My doctor explained it good but this article helped.

  12. I was diagnosed with Weiss ring just a few weeks ago, which occurred in my right eye, which is the weaker side of my vision. I do have extreme near-sightedness, and my doctor explained that this common for near-sighted individuals. Unfortunately, it is most likely going to occur in my other eye, too. There is no surgical remedy; only if there is a retinal detachment will surgery be required. Only time will help me to get adjusted. For me, I see a little cobweb in my right side; it seems like I see a hair in my vision, and I want to wipe away the hair, but there is nothing to wipe away.

  13. How can an eye doctor differentiate between a Weiss ring and AMD? My eye doctor dismissed my suggestion that the doughnut-shape shadow in my left eye could be a Weiss ring. He sounded like he never heard of a Weiss ring! Now I am under treatment for AMD by monthly Eylea injections. I have completed three treatments so far. I am male and 77 years old. Your enlightenment on my case will be greatly appreciated.

  14. Last Saturday I thought I had a curled up eye lash in my right eye. By Sunday/Monday it looked more like a pale coloured contact lens moving around the eye. I phoned my optician on Tuesday but they could not see me and they immediately said I should go to the hospital. I was diagnosed with a PVD and suspect from what I have read here and elsewhere, this is a Weiss ring. I will be seen again in two weeks. Sincerely hoping this goes away soon!

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