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Macular Degeneration - Know The Symptoms & Treatment Of It!

Written and reviewed by
Fellowship in Retina (FMRF)
Ophthalmologist, Nashik  •  14 years experience
Macular Degeneration - Know The Symptoms & Treatment Of It!

Macular Degeneration is an irreversible eye problem that results in vision loss. Macular Degeneration is seen in aged people around 60. It occurs when there is impairment in the retina of the eyes. A slightly central region of the retina called the macula deteriorates and degenerates sometimes. Due to this, aged people have vision loss. The problem cannot be cured, but can be supported with therapies, laser treatments, and medicines.

Since, Macular Degeneration occurs due to age problems, there is no definitive treatment to cure the same. It does not result in a complete blinding condition but can lead to severe visual disability.

Types of Macular Degeneration:

There are mainly two types of Macular Degeneration:

Dry Form Macular Degeneration: There are dry yellow color deposits called drusen in the macula. It occurs as a small spot in the eyes, which gets more significant with time. A small spot generally does not create problems. But as time passes, the light sensing layer behind the eye gets thinner which leads to tissue death.

Wet Form Macular Degeneration: There are deposits of blood vessels from the choroid underneath the macula. These blood vessels leak fluid and blood into the retina which results in distortion and blind spots in the eyes. The condition is also referred to as choroidal neovascularization.

Symptoms of Macular Degeneration:

In the early stages of Macular Degeneration, the patient may notice sudden degradation in the quality of vision. The straight lines through lenses may feel distorted. This may gradually worsen the situation resulting in visual disability.

Other symptoms that can be noticed are:

  1. Change in recognition of colors

  2. Blurry vision

  3. White spots may be experienced in the center vision

  4. Dark Spots

Diagnosis of Macular Degeneration:

The early diagnosis for Macular Degeneration is not possible for the doctor unless you go for routine check-ups. With routine checks ups and the quality of vision hints, the doctors of Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) disease diagnosis it in the initial stages. It may slow the process of degeneration of the macula in the retinas.

The doctor will first test the vision and retinas for diagnosis. He will look for yellow deposits that are hindering the visual quality. Doctors also suggest tests like fluorescein angiography, and OCT and also test visual examinations with the Amsler grid.

Treatment of Macular Degeneration:

There is no cure for Macular Degeneration as such yet. But, some doctors believe that the condition can be slowed down by taking proper therapy and sufficient vitamins. Some of the basic treatments suggested by the doctors are:

  1. Anti-angiogenesis Drugs: The blockage in the vision of the eye is due to the growth of abnormal blood vessels which makes the macula wet. Anti-angiogenesis drugs stop the deposits of blood vessels in the eyes and hence, help in treating the problem.

  2. Laser Techniques: Laser techniques are a successful form of treatment for eye problems. Laser beams destroy the blockage and promote the flow of blood in the eyes.

  3. Vitamins: Doctors suggest that administering sufficient vitamins daily may slow the process and help in the treatment of AMD.

Take Away:

Age-related Macular Degeneration is an irreversible eye condition. Although it is not life threatening, it can cause blind spots and visual disability. It is essential for patients to get routine check-ups for eyesight and visit their doctors on a regular basis.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult a specialist & get answers to your questions!
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