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Have you noticed floaters in your vision and are wondering if they're dangerous or not?

Floaters are often a natural part of aging, but if you have a sudden onset of them, it may indicate a more significant problem. 

The ophthalmologists and optometrists at Pearl Street Eye can evaluate Boulder, CO, patients to see if floaters are harmless or of concern.

Noticing Sudden Changes in Your Vision?

If you suddenly have floaters and flashes in your vision accompanied by eye pain or partial vision, this can be indicative of retinal detachment, a retinal tear, or another medical emergency that requires prompt treatment. 

What Are Eye Floaters?

Eye floaters are made up of a protein called collagen. They appear as black or gray specks or cobweb-like strings that drift in your field of vision. You may notice them more often when staring at bright, blank objects, like the sky, a wall, or a sheet of paper. 

We're Here to Help Request a Consultation

If you notice any of the emergency symptoms listed above or are overdue for an eye exam, contact our practice for a consultation. 

Using the latest technology in the field, our ophthalmologists and optometrists can pinpoint what's causing your vision errors and find a solution. Call our eye care specialists to request a consultation at our Boulder office:

(303) 442-6260

Pearl Street Eye Office
We provide comprehensive care for your whole family.

"Always a pleasant experience." 5-Star Reviews From Boulder Patients


trudy hewitt


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Dr Ruth was great. Very knowledgeable, efficient, friendly. Surgery went great and I’m doing awesome.

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Kate Brown


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The staff at this office are exceptional. Everyone is nice, friendly and helpful and it's always a pleasant experience.

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Eye Floaters May Indicate a More Serious Condition

It's essential to track how long you've had floaters in your vision and if the condition worsens. Always be open with our eye care specialists about your symptoms so we can accurately recommend treatment if we suspect a more serious medical condition, such as: 

Vitreous Hemorrhage

Vitreous is a clear gel between the eye's lens and retina. As you age, the vitreous shrinks and pulls away from the retina, naturally detaching from the back of the eye. Eye floaters can accompany this process and are entirely normal.

However, sometimes a vitreous hemorrhage can occur that causes bleeding in the eye. If your vision is blurred, contact our office right away. 

Retinal Tear or Detachment

Sometimes the process of vitreous detaching exerts such pressure on your eye that the retina itself tears or detaches from the eye. Retinal tears and detachment are not a normal aging process and require immediate medical intervention before permanent visual problems and blindness occur.

Floaters may be a warning sign of a retinal tear or detachment when accompanied by other symptoms. 

Find the Treatment for You Request a Consultation

If you notice floaters in your vision, come into our Boulder office for a comprehensive eye exam. Our ophthalmologists and optometrists can give you the peace of mind you need when dealing with floaters in your vision.

Whether you want clarity and reassurance that your floaters are harmless or you want non-emergency treatment, our doctors can help you find solutions. Call our Boulder office to request a consultation:

(303) 442-6260

"I truly enjoyed my eye exam." More 5-Star Reviews From Boulder Patients


Henry Ragland


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I truly enjoyed my eye exam with Dr. Cushing, I have never been happier with an eye exam than the one I had with him. He nailed my contact lens prescription. I will definitely be referring all my friends to Pearl Street Eye.

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Betsy Redfern


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Prompt, professional, knowledgeable staff. Dr. Ruth is deep in knowledge, effective in communication and unhurried in her process. I not only would recommend this organization, I intend to.

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The Vitrectomy Process

A vitrectomy is usually a nonemergency procedure for patients that don't have retinal detachment or tears but have gradually increasing floaters. 
Removing the vitreous allows our Boulder eye doctors to see the retina. 
Removing the vitreous allows our Boulder eye doctors to see the retina. 

Anesthesia and Sedation

You may be given general anesthesia to put you to sleep during the procedure, or you may be given a local anesthetic to numb the eye and sedation medication to calm you or the procedure but keep you awake. 

Locating the Vitreous

Your eye doctor will use small tools to locate the vitreous. 

Removing the Vitreous

Your eye doctor will then enter the vitreous and suction the gel out of the eye. 

Repairing the Eye

At this point, the eye doctor will perform any additional surgeries you require if you have a medical condition, such as a hole in your retina. 

Filling the Space

Once treatment is complete, the doctor will fill in the space that the vitreous once was with air or a solution.

Does Insurance Cover Treatment?


Treatment for floaters is not an elective procedure, meaning insurance will likely cover the cost. Our staff can see how much your insurance will cover and help you get the most out of your plan. 

FAQ About Floaters

What's the difference between flashes and floaters?

Floaters appear as dark shadows that can look like dots, lines, cobwebs, and other murky blobs. Flashes are bright streaks of light that can appear as a faint flash or a prominent streak. Flashes are a cause for concern, unlike floaters on their own. 

Are floaters the same thing as "seeing stars" in my vision?

No. Seeing stars is caused by your eye pressure changing from various acts, such as standing up too fast, sneezing too aggressively, or being faint. Floaters are dark shadows cast onto the retina, not bright dots of light. 

Does everyone have floaters?

Everyone will likely experience floaters once or more in their lifetime. The chance of seeing floaters increases as you age and is a natural part of the aging process in most cases. 

Can floaters naturally go away?

Yes, eye floaters will often dissipate from your vision after a few months, or your body will get used to them, and they will no longer bother you. If floaters continue progressing, it's time to get your eyes examined. 

When should I get my eye floaters checked?

To be on the safe side, we recommend you join us at our Boulder office for a comprehensive eye exam as soon as new floaters start to emerge. This way, our doctors can immediately rule out any dangerous medical conditions, such as retinal detachment. 

"I will be referring everyone I know." More 5-Star Reviews From Boulder Patients


Laurie Dameron


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So glad Pearl St Eye is open again. My visit there was super - the receptionist and the doctor and everyone there was top notch professional. My new prescriptions for my trifocals and reading glasses are so excellent! 

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Charlie Van Goetz


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Their staff top to bottom is excellent. Mike was my technician, we was wonderful. He was very attentive to all of my medical history/concerns. Dr. Cushing was my doctor and he was absolutely incredible. He really sweet and took his time during his exam. I will be referring everyone I know to Pearl Street Eye

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Pearl Street Eye

The team at Pearl Street Eye in Boulder, CO, combines cutting-edge technology with a genuine commitment to patients' health. Drs. Stanley Cushing and  Justin Coco, have in-depth experience and are members of the:

  • American Academy of Ophthalmology™
  • American Osteopathic Association®
  • American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery
  • International Society of Refractive Surgery®
  • American Osteopathic Colleges of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery
  • American Optometric Association

Are you due for an eye exam or worried about your vision? Request a consultation or call our practice today at (303) 442-6260.

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Boulder Location

2575 Pearl St.
Boulder, CO 80302

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