Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration occurs when the macula (central part of the back of the eye) deteriorates. The macula region of the retina is responsible for central vision as well as fine or detailed vision tasks. If the macula is significantly damaged due to macular degeneration, patients are unable to read and write or perform other detailed tasks.

This disease, also referred to as AMD or ARMD (age-related macular degeneration), is the leading cause of blindness and vision loss for people in America over 65 years of age. It is estimated that close to 2 million people in the United States have significant difficulty with detailed vision tasks due to AMD. As a larger portion of the population reaches 65, this number is expected to reach 3 million by 2020.


Symptoms of AMD

Dry AMD causes a slow and painless loss of vision, but wet AMD can cause rapid vision loss. Over time vision can become distorted, due to the swelling and leakage of tissue around the macula, and detailed vision can be lost. A retinal examination can often detect AMD before a patient notices the visual losses. This is, in part, because one eye normally progresses more rapidly than the other, and unless the patient is looking at images with only one eye, he or she would not notice the loss of vision in the worse eye.

During a retina examination, the eye doctor may ask the patient to view a grid pattern, called an Amsler grid. A distortion detected in the grid pattern by the patient may be a sign of the disease. Once detected, the doctor may order other special tests like retinal photographs, Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) or Fluoroscein Angiography (FA) to determine if AMD is the wet or dry form, and the extent of its progression.

Get in Touch:

BVA Advanced Eye Care has 3 optometrists, and 3 ophthalmologists to create Better Vision Ahead. The first step of creating better vision is to speak with an eye doctor. You can contact us through our website or give us a call at 1-888-323-3937