Adapted from the National Eye Institute, U.S. National Institutes
of Health. Available online: http://www.nei.nih.gov
retina is a thin nerve membrane that detects light entering the eye. The light
causes nerve cells in the retina to send signals along the optic nerve to the
brain. The brain interprets the signals as a picture of what the eye
The retina lines the back two-thirds of the eye. The macula,
near the center of the retina at the back of the eyeball, provides the sharp,
detailed, central vision a person uses for focusing on what is directly in the
line of sight.
The rest of the retina provides side (peripheral)
vision, which lets a person see shapes but not fine details. The optic disc is
the point inside the eye where the nerve that leads from the eye to the brain
(optic nerve) leaves the eye.
Primary Medical Reviewer
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
Christopher J. Rudnisky, MD, MPH, FRCSC - Ophthalmology
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.