When the retina becomes infected it is called retinitis. There are many organisms that may cause retinitis, but the most common is a virus called cytomegalovirus or CMV. CMV Retinitis is most commonly seen in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) or other causes of immunosuppression. In many cases, CMV retinitis can be treated with intravenous medication intravitreal antibiotic injection, or the placement of a sustained-release Ganciclovir pellet into the vitreous.
Additionally, retinitis can cause the retina to become thin and weak. Retinal holes may develop in the thinned parts of the retina. Retinal detachment can also occur. If this happens, vitrectomy surgery combined with laser treatment and/or the placement of a silicone buckle may be necessary to reattach the retina and prevent further loss of vision.