Age Related Macular Degeneration
Macular Degeneration, or AMD, is an "aging deterioration" of the "macula". The macula is the small (about 1-2mm) central area of the retina, the inner lining of the back of the eye. AMD affects your ability to see near and far. It causes blurriness, dark areas or distortion of your vision, and can make activities such as reading or driving difficult or impossible. Since AMD reduces vision in the central part of the retina only, and not the peripheral vision, you may (for example) still be able to see the outline of a clock, but not tell the time.
Macular degeneration can show up with different symptoms in different people. In its early stages, it may cause nothing more than preventing the "perfect 20/20" vision that you had when younger. Even as it may progress, sometimes only one eye loses vision for several years before the other eye is affected.
Once both eyes are affected, the symptoms become more noticeable, including:
- Blurry words on a page
- Areas of distortion or wavering vision near the vision center
- The center of your vision becomes "dark" or "empty"
People develop AMD as a part of the body's natural aging process. The reason why it develops is unknown. UltraViolet light is probably related, in the same manner as our skin is damaged over the course of our lives. Fortunately, AMD alone does NOT result in total blindness. Patients can be profoundly affected by AMD, even preventing the ability to read or sew, but they can ambulate easily due to their peripheral vision being completely intact. In many mild cases, its impact on your vision can be minimal.
Although no one treatment has been proven consistently effective, we now know that a certain vitamin mixture can slow the progression of the milder, "dry" form of AMD. Please talk to us, or CLICK HERE, if you'd like to know more.