What Shiny Yellow Spots Can Mean

By Dr. Yvonne Alomia

liverfailureRecently, I saw a 16 year old girl for a routine eye examination.  Last exam had been 2-3 years ago.   Her medical history was negative for everything.  Picture of her right eye’s retina is above.   Blood work by primary care physician shows she has HIGH LIVER ENZYMES but they don’t know why.    The shiny, yellow spots in the retina are called hard exudates. They are the lipid residues of serous leakage from damaged capillaries.   Causes are diabetes, retinal vein occlusion, angiomas (Von Hippel-Lindau Disease), other vascular dysplasias, and radiation-induced retinal vasculopathy.

More common causes of elevated liver enzymes include:

  1. Certain prescription medications, including statin drugs used to control cholesterol
  2. Drinking alcohol
  3. Heart failure
  4. Hepatitis A
  5. Hepatitis B
  6. Hepatitis C
  7. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
  8. Obesity
  9. Over-the-counter pain medications, including acetaminophen (Tylenol, others)
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