Common Diagnosis

Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP)

Retinopathy of Prematurity is an eye disorder affecting premature infants. This disorder was called Retrolental Fibroplasia in the past.

ROP affects immature blood vessels of the retina. It occurs weeks after birth. Once development of blood vessels is complete, a child is no longer a candidate for this disorder.

The suggested causes of Retinopathy of Prematurity are those conditions which stop the orderly growth of retinal blood vessels and stimulate their wild overgrowth.

Over 50 conditions have been proposed and thus far, have not been ruled out. The most frequently mentioned conditions are prematurity, excessive oxygen, infection, and/or excessive exposure to light.

Additional information is available in the Blind Children’s Center Pediatric Visual Diagnosis Fact Sheets.