Ask the doctor: Do I need to worry about floaters?

Published: June, 2013

Q. At 65, I have begun to notice tiny threadlike shapes in my vision, which my doctor calls "floaters." Should I be concerned?

A. "Floaters" is a catchall term for the dots, threads, or cobwebs that many of us notice drifting across our line of vision as we get older. We may also notice flashes of light. Floaters move as your eye moves and dart away when you try to look at them.

To continue reading this article, you must log in.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »