The visual field is defined as the portion of space that can be seen in normal conditions by any person. When a visual defect or a disease occurs that interferes with the view you can see the loss of part of the visual field, which is characterized by blindness. The injury can affect any of the elements involved in developing from the retina to the brain.

Several diseases and conditions can cause narrowing of the visual field. The most common and among the least serious is myopia. But there are many other conditions such as retinal detachment, retinitis pigmentosa, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy if not treated early, can lead to irreversible vision loss.


What kind of diseases can be associated with narrowing of the visual field?

The following diseases may be associated with narrowing of the visual field:

  • Albinism
  • Brain aneurysm
  • Leber optic atrophy
  • Cataract
  • Chorioretinitis
  • Related macular degeneration (or senile)
  • Disorders of the circulation vertebrobasilar
  • Retinal detachment
  • Cone-rod dystrophy
  • Cerebral hemorrhage
  • Macular holes
  • Glaucoma
  • Stroke
  • Best disease
  • Stargardt disease
  • Tay-Sachs disease
  • Myopia
  • Optic neuritis
  • Retinal vascular occlusions
  • Retinitis pigmentosa
  • Retinoblastoma
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Hypertensive retinopathy
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Strabismus
  • Head trauma

Remember that this is not an exhaustive list and it is highly recommended to consult your doctor, in case of symptom’s persistence.


When is most likely to contact your doctor in case of narrowing of the visual field?

The remedies for narrowing of the visual field differ widely depending on the type of disease.

In more common and less severe cases (for example, myopia) is sufficient to use glasses or contact lenses to correct the visual defect. In all other cases, however, you must be referred to a specialist or a specialist center. In fact, the narrowing of the visual field can be a symptom of degenerative diseases that are in conflict with drug therapy, surgical or controlling the disease that causes it (e.g. diabetes). In some cases, a surgery is the only instrument that can stop or slow down the loss of vision and prevent blindness.


When is most likely to contact your doctor in case of narrowing of the visual field?

You must know the evolution of the disorder, so you can evaluate the need to seek medical attention. If the narrowing of the visual field is a known factor, linked to myopia, this may stabilize or worsen over time, but in any case, you should just regularly undergo specialist examinations by an ophthalmologist.

If, however, the visual field loss is sudden and  occurs in the presence of a dark spot (scotoma) that prevents a comfortable view, it is necessary to quickly resort  to emergency care or to an emergency room.