June 5, 2007 at 7:27 PM CDT - Updated July 26 at 9:05 AM
Traumatic injuries to the eye can lead to severe retinal problems. A direct blow to the eye may cause vitreous hemorrhage and/or retinal detachment. Pieces of metal, or other materials called intraocular foreign bodies, may penetrate the eye wall (sclera) and cause retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, or severe infection in the eye. Even if they don't cause immediate problems, certain metallic foreign bodies may be toxic and can eventually destroy the eye if they remain in place. If the eye is penetrated by a sharp object, scar tissue can form along the track of the object as well as on the retinal surface. The scar tissue can pull on and detach the retina (traction retinal detachment).