Macular Degeneration

Also known as Age-related macular degeneration (AMD or ARMD)

A medical condition which may result in blurred or no vision in the centre of the visual field.

Symptoms

Distorted vision in the form of metamorphopsia, in which a grid of straight lines appear wavy and parts of the grid may appear blank: Patients often first notice this when looking at things like blinds in their home or telephone poles while driving.

Early on there are often no symptoms. Over time, however, some people experience a gradual worsening of vision that may affect one or both eyes. While it does not result in complete blindness, loss of central vision can make it hard to recognize faces, drive, read, or perform other activities of daily life.Slow recovery of visual function after exposure to bright light (photostress test)

  • Visual acuity drastically decreasing (two levels or more), e.g.: 20/20 to 20/80
  • Blurred vision:
  • Trouble discerning colours, specifically dark ones from dark ones and light ones from light ones
  • A loss in contrast sensitivity
  • Formed visual hallucinations and flashing lights have also been associated with severe visual loss secondary to wet AMD
  • Visual hallucinations may also occur

Causes

Macular degeneration typically occurs in older people. Genetic factors and smoking also play a role.

Risk Factors

Aging, genetics, smoking, hypertension, atherosclerosis, obesity, fat intake, overexposure to UV lights.

Treatment

Treatment of AMD varies depending on the category of the disease at the time of diagnosis. In general, treatment is aimed at slowing down the progression of AMD.

As of 2018, there are no treatments to reverse the effects of AMD.

Anti-angiogenic drugs.

  • Are injected into your eye. They stop new blood vessels from forming and block the leaking from the abnormal vessels that cause wet macular degeneration.
  • Some people who take these drugs have been able to regain vision that they lost from AMD. You will likely need to get the treatment repeated on follow-up visits.

Laser therapy.

  • Your doctor may suggest a treatment with high-energy laser light that can sometimes destroy actively growing abnormal blood vessels from AMD.

Photodynamic laser therapy.

  • It’s a two-step treatment that uses a light-sensitive drug to damage your abnormal blood vessels.
  • Your doctor injects a medication into your bloodstream, which gets absorbed by the abnormal blood vessels in your eye. Next, he shines a laser into the eye to activate the drug, which damages the abnormal blood vessels.

Need to book a consultation?

    Start typing and press Enter to search