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Macular Degeneration

Macular DegenerationAs a disease usually associated with aging, macular degeneration is also called age-related macular degeneration (ARMD). 
 
Macular degeneration symptoms include a gradual loss of central vision needed to perform everyday tasks like driving or reading, and a reduced ability to see small visual details like fine print or patterns.
 
Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in Americans over age 60.  It presents itself in two forms: dry macular degeneration and wet macular degeneration. Of the two, the dry form is far more common. Both affect the center region of the retina, the light-sensitive area in the back of the eye responsible for processing images we see.

Macular Degeneration Statistics

Currently, macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in persons over age 60. Caucasians are far more likely to lose vision from ARMD.  Studies show that obesity, smoking, and exposure to UV rays may also be risk factors for developing the disease.
 
Macular degeneration tends to affect women more than men, and has also been linked to heredity. Nearly 90% of all diagnosed ARMD is the dry form.
  • Macular degeneration also called age-related macular degeneration, is an age-related condition in which the most sensitive part of the retina begins to break down and lose its ability to create clear visual images. 
  • Dry macular degeneration symptoms include: consistent, slightly blurred vision within your central visual field. You may have difficulty recognizing faces, and have a sudden need for more light while reading or working. The dry form of this disease gets progressively worse over time.

    Wet macular degeneration symptoms include: a distortion of straight lines and an inability to focus properly on a single point within a grid. Wet macular degeneration is an advanced stage of the disease, and often results in loss of centralized vision.

  • Macular degeneration symptoms vary based on the particular form of the disease, and the stage the disease is in when diagnosed.
  • Even though there is no outright cure for macular degeneration, some treatments may delay its progression or even improve vision.