In most cases, floaters are caused by the vitreous breaking down and are generally harmless, but in some it may be more sinister. This is because sudden onset of floaters may coincide with the development of a retinal tear, which may result in a retinal detachment - a potentially blinding problem.Who is at risk?
In retinal detachment, the retina separates from the outer layers of the eye, thus losing its function. Anyone can potentially develop a retinal tear and detachment as the vitreous degenerates. However, the risk increases in patients with high myopia.