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Question:
My 7-year-old daughter says that every once in a while she sees a white hexagon shape in her vision. It moves on to whatever she is looking at and then it goes away. What might this be?

Answer:
It is hard to know for sure what she sees. There are at least two possibilities. A shape in your daughter's vision that moves when she tries to look at it sounds most typical of a condition known as a vitreous floater. These are very common, and usually increase in prevalence with age. Typically they are grayish or translucent, painless, and the vision is preserved. They are caused by tissue fragments pulled from the retina or other debris within the eye that cast a shadow on the retina which the brain interprets as a shape. When your daughter moves her eye to look at it, the shape has to move with the eye so it is hard to look directly at the spot. One other possibility might be the visual aura of migraine which can produce a jagged shape or edge in the vision that moves and then disappears in five to 20 minutes. These may not be associated with a headache in younger children.

Answered by: Michael Repka, MD Dr. Michael X. Repka

Categories: Eye Conditions, Children's Eye Health

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Answered: Jun 25, 2013

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