Go to Top

Macular Degeneration Treatment

Macular degeneration affects people at an older age

macular degeneration treatmentMany people experience loss of vision over the age of sixty. Macular degeneration is a condition of the eyes which causes macula damage; it is usually named aged macular degeneration (AGM). As the macular degenerates, the signals from your eye to your brain aren’t transmitted as they should. People who suffer from macular degeneration experience different progression of the disease. For some, it advances very slowly, while others lose their vision in both eyes or in one eye only. When a person has macular degeneration, the central vision is blurred and items don’t seem to look as colored as they used to be. Macular degeneration prevents people from doing daily activities such as reading, writing or driving. The macula is a very sensitive part of the retina, based at the back of the eye, when it is damaged one may experience blurry and dark visions. Aside from age, there are other risk factors such as a family history, or smoking which double up the possibility of getting macular degeneration, cardiovascular diseases and race may also be an influencing factor, (e.g., Africans are less likely to get macular degeneration than Caucasians).

Symptoms of macular degeneration

There are two kinds of macular degeneration; Wet macular degeneration is when blood vessels leak into the macula.

Dry macular degeneration is more typical and less serious. Usually people who have macular degeneration often experience dry macular degeneration, the reason why it develops to be a wet macular degeneration is not known.

Symptoms of wet macular degeneration include:

  • Blurred vision, blind spots or blurry spots in vision
  • Decreasing of brightness of colors
  • Visual distortions
  • Hallucinations of vision shapes
  • Changes in central vision

Wet macular degeneration can progress to severe vision loss due to a mass of fluid buildup in the back of the eye and a growth of abnormal blood vessel.

Diagnosis of macular degeneration

The eye doctor will examine carefully if you suffer from macular degeneration with the following tests:

  • A test of the back of your eye to see if there is blood or fluid
  • An examination of the center of your vision
  • An imaging test called an optical coherence tomography, which can identify retinal abnormalities such as leaking fluid in the eye.
  • Fluorescein angiogram. You will be injected a colored dye into the vein and once the colored dye reaches the blood vessels of the eye, the eye doctor can check if there is a leak in the blood vessel walls.
  • There are three stages of macular degeneration; early, intermediate and late. The stages state the degree of the vision loss from a damaged macula. A person who has an early macular degeneration will not automatically develop an intermediate or a late macular degeneration disease. The problem lies with people who have an early macular degeneration in one eye and so their vision is not so blurred (due to a healthy eye which is center-focused). These people, not experiencing a change in their vision, have an increased risk of a late macular deterioration. You must see a doctor even if you experience a blurred vision in one eye.

Macular degeneration treatment

For people who have dry macular degeneration, as there are no symptoms, the only thing is to have a check-up every year in order to see that the situation does not deteriorate. In general, it is important to exercise, avoid smoking and eat green vegetables. A combination of high-dose vitamins can also help to prevent the disease from developing.

There is no ultimate cure for macular degeneration, however, there are medications which are injected to the eye to block the progress of new blood vessels and the leakage. Anti-angiogenic drugs improve the condition of people who are affected by the disease dramatically.

Laser therapy destroys abnormal blood vessels and is also used as one of the treatments to fight macular degeneration.