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Retinopathy of Prematurity

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jan 5, 2023.

Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is when abnormal blood vessels develop in your baby's retinas. The retina is the part of the eye that captures light and sends information to the brain. ROP happens in premature babies or low birth weight babies. ROP most often affects both eyes.


Follow up with your baby's pediatrician or ophthalmologist as directed:

Keep all follow-up appointments. Your baby's pediatrician or ophthalmologist will monitor your baby's ROP. Your baby may need more tests to find other eye conditions that can happen with ROP. Your baby's pediatrician or ophthalmologist will go over any test results with you. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

For support and more information:

  • American Academy of Pediatrics
    345 Park Boulevard
    Itasca , IL 60143
    Phone: 1- 800 - 433-9016
    Web Address:

Treatment options

The following list of medications are in some way related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

Contact your baby's pediatrician or ophthalmologist if:

  • Your baby has a fever.
  • Your baby's eye is red, swollen, and draining pus.
  • Your baby is not eating or drinking well.
  • You have questions or concerns about your baby's condition or care.

Seek care immediately if:

  • Your baby is irritable and crying more than usual.
  • Your baby has blood spots in his or her eyes.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.