What is Retinoschisis?

Retinoschisis is an eye disease that occurs from the splitting, or schisis, of the retina’s neurosensory layers. While typically retinoschisis is asymptomatic, this disorder is usually identified by partial vision loss corresponding to the split areas of the retina. Retinoschisis is most commonly a degenerative condition; a result of aging.

Causes & Treatment

A degenerative disease, retinoschisis occurs as blisters, or cysts, form within the retina. As the cysts combine, the schisis creates an inner and outer cavity. These layers fill with fluid over time and may develop holes. In cases where both layers develop holes, the liquid vitreous can leak under both retinal layers, leading to retinal detachment. Retinal detachment is extremely rare, however, and in these cases, surgery would be performed to reattach the retina.


Retinoschisis itself cannot be corrected by medication or procedures. Since the split-causing cysts damage the nerve tissue of the eye, glasses or contact lenses will not improve vision. If retinal detachment does occur, the retina can be reattached surgically to restore vision.