Macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss for adults age 50 and older, is the loss of your central vision. It refers to the "macula" - the tiny part of your retina that's responsible for sharp central vision.
Your ability to read fine print, drive or work on hobbies is usually affected, but your peripheral (side) vision is not affected.
The disease affects one eye before progressing to the second. It may progress quickly or gradually.
Wet macular degeneration - small blood vessels grow under the retina (the light-sensitive area at the back of your eye) and break, leaking into the surrounding area and causing distorted vision and scar tissue.
Your risk of getting macular degeneration increases with age. In fact, it is the leading cause of blindness in people age 75 and older. It may also be related to heredity, arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) or eye trauma.
The symptoms of macular degeneration include:
Symptoms usually get worse over time as the disease progresses.
Your eye doctor can detect glaucoma from the following tests
At this point, no medications are available to treat
the disease. Some cases of wet macular degeneration can be treated by laser therapy when caught early. The laser seals off the leaky blood vessels at the back of the eye with a beam of concentrated light.
Low vision aids may be helpful for you. You can use glasses, magnifiers, telescopes, lamps, closed circuit TVs and large print books to make the best use of their remaining vision. These aids can be found both at retail outlets and low vision centers. Dr. Baer or one of our optometrists will advise you about the best treatment for you.