What Is Macular Edema?

Macular edema occurs when fluid builds up in the retina—the light sensitive tissue in the back of the eye. This causes swelling and can distort vision. The macula, in the center of the retina, helps us see fine detail and color—it delivers images to us at a higher resolution than any camera or screen.

With macular edema, vision can resemble the screen of an older model TV set—with washed out colors and a blurry picture. Without treatment, it can even lead to permanent vision loss.