The relationship between the intraretinal vessels of the human fundus and the surrounding neuronal tissue is discussed with regard to various disease states. Present evidence suggests that primary retinal neuronal death does not lead to secondary retinal capillary death. Primary retinal capillary non-perfusion generally leads to concomitant retinal neuronal degeneration, but if the occlusion takes place over a long period of time the surrounding neural retina may survive. It is suggested that many retinal degenerative changes, including retinal detachment, are due to primary retinal vascular alterations.
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