Retinopathy of Prematurity

Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) causes abnormal blood vessels to grow in the retina, the layer of nerve tissue in the eye that enables us to see.

How is retinopathy of prematurity diagnosed?

Generally, the earlier a baby is born, the greater the risk of ROP. Because ROP has no signs or symptoms, the only way to detect it is through an eye examination by a pediatric ophthalmologist.

How is retinopathy of prematurity treated?

The results of your baby’s first eye exam will determine the need and frequency of follow-up examinations. ROP is usually diagnosed according to stages that describe how far the blood vessels have grown into the retina.

Some cases of ROP are mild and correct themselves, but others require surgery to prevent vision reduction or blindness. Surgery involves using a laser or other means to stop the growth of the abnormal blood vessels, the goal being to prevent the vessels from pulling on and detaching the retina.

A to Z: Otorrhea

A to Z: Otorrhea

Otorrhea is discharge from the external part of the ear canal.

More to Know

Ear drainage can be serous (thin and watery), sanguineous (containing blood), or purulent (full of pus). It may or may not smell foul.

Vertigo, ear pain, fever, itching, ringing in the ear, and hearing loss are all symptoms that can accompany otorrhea.

Many things can cause fluid to drain from the ear. Most commonly, it occurs with swimmer's ear or when an ear infection leads to a perforated eardrum (with or without middle ear infection). Head injury can cause leaking of cerebrospinal fluid (the fluid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord). Head injury is a less common cause of otorrhea, but it is more serious and can be life threatening.

Keep in Mind

Because ear discharge has many origins, it's important to see a doctor to identify the cause so that it can be properly treated.

All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.

Reviewed by:
Date reviewed: September 26, 2016