Vision loss due to AMD
Macular Degeneration, also known as age-related macular degeneration or AMD, is a deterioration of the macula, the central area of the eye's retina that controls your “seeing” vision (what you are using to read this passage!) It is a leading cause of vision loss and blindness in older Americans, and can be devastating if not monitored and treated in its early stages.
There are two forms of macular degeneration that people can develop, both of which can begin in your 50s:
Dry AMD: The most common, with 85-90% of people developing this form. In the early stages, there is breakdown of the natural pigment layer protecting your vision and development of waste products called drusen, or scattered/increased pigmentation around the area. In its advanced stage, called geographic atrophy, vision has substantially declined.
Wet AMD: While only 10-15% of people get this, people with dry AMD may very well progress to this form. With wet AMD, there is a growth of abnormal blood vessels and fluid leakage in the macula that can cause a sudden and significant vision loss.
While AMD is usually genetic, poor diet, low oxygen circulation, and UV light can also lead to the degeneration. However, there are also modifiable lifestyle behaviors that can prevent this degeneration from occurring or progressing.
Our doctors provide an extensive exam of the entire retina (back of the eye), including the macula, at every general visit. We can detect early signs of AMD, as well as provide in-depth information about the best treatment and best eye vitamins/supplements to protect your macula from potential AMD. We also provide diet, nutrition and lifestyle advice, along with how you can detect changes in your vision from AMD. We also work closely with retina specialists to manage your AMD if you need other treatment options such as eye injections.