Among the causes of macular degeneration is age related, also known as wet macular degeneration. Besides that, there are other causes such as genetics, exposure to ultraviolet rays, and smoking. Fortunately, there are some ways to prevent macular degeneration.
Dry age-related macular degeneration
Fortunately, dry age-related macular degeneration has no known cure. However, it can be detected early and treated to prevent further vision loss. There are also treatments available that may slow down the progression of dry AMD and may help restore lost vision. Those at risk for the disease should seek an eye doctor regularly. Symptoms can be similar to those of other retinal disorders. They include blurred vision, haziness in the central part of the visual field, and a blind spot in the center of the visual field.
In early dry AMD, small deposits of waste material, called drusen, form under the retina. These deposits are made up of cholesterol, protein, and fats. They are often visible during eye exams. If drusen are detected, they are usually accompanied by wavy lines that indicate the drusen have lifted the retina. The wavy lines can create small areas of visual distortion.
Late-stage dry AMD has more drusen and may involve noticeable loss of central vision. People with late-stage AMD may also experience blurry vision near the center of the visual field. Some people with late-stage AMD may also notice blurry areas in the outer corners of the visual field. This can make it difficult to read, drive, or do other daily activities.
It is important to note that dry age-related macular degeneration may develop into wet age-related macular degeneration. This can occur when blood and fluid leak from the choroid, the fatty tissue behind the retina, and damage the macula. A fluorescein angiogram test is sometimes performed to find leaking blood vessels. It will also show if any new blood vessels are developing. If left untreated, the blood vessels may worsen and new blind spots will develop.
If you have been diagnosed with dry AMD, your eye doctor will recommend a course of treatment to slow down the progression of the disease. Typical treatments include a high dosage of antioxidant vitamins. In some cases, patients may also benefit from a combination of supplements. Some of the supplements include lutein, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids. Other nutritional supplements, such as fish oil, are also being studied for their effects on dry AMD. It is important to let your eye doctor know if any changes in your vision occur during treatment.
Fortunately, the loss of central vision caused by dry AMD can be slow and gradual. However, it can worsen over time, leading to complete blindness. To help keep your eyes healthy, you should eat a balanced diet, reduce your exposure to sunlight, and avoid smoking. Those at risk for the disease should consider wearing sunglasses during their daily activities. Those with a family history of the disease should see their doctor regularly. They may also consider taking part in a vision rehabilitation program. This program will teach you to compensate for lost vision and help you develop new daily activities.
Treatment options for wet macular degeneration
Fortunately, there are treatment options for wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) that can slow or prevent further loss of vision. But despite these treatment options, a significant amount of vision loss may still occur.
One of the best treatment options for wet AMD is anti-VEGF therapy. This is a drug that is injected into the eye to block the growth of new blood vessels. In addition, this treatment can help stop the development of abnormal blood vessels.
Anti-VEGF injections are often the first treatment option for wet AMD. However, they may be uncomfortable at first. The drug is typically injected into the eye once every four to six weeks. As the blood vessels shrink, the patient may experience some partial vision recovery.
Another treatment option for wet AMD is photodynamic therapy. This treatment involves the injection of a drug called Visudyne into the eye. The drug is then activated by a laser. Once activated, the drug destroys the abnormal blood vessels and prevents further vision loss. The drug is most effective when leaky blood vessels are located in the fovea.
Some patients may also need intra-ocular injectable drugs to treat wet AMD. These injections are usually stand-alone treatments, but in rare cases, they may be used in conjunction with laser treatment. However, there are many risks associated with eye injections. These risks include infection, retinal detachment, inflammation and increased eye pressure.
Some of the more common treatments for wet AMD involve monthly injections of anti-VEGF drugs into the eye. This is often combined with laser photocoagulation surgery, which is a procedure that seals the leaky blood vessels. However, laser surgery is not a good option for those with abnormal blood vessels under the macula. It can also leave a permanent blind spot behind.
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Another treatment option for wet AMD is photodynamic therapy, or “cool laser” therapy. This procedure involves the injection of a drug called Visudyne into the eye. The drug is then activated by a laser. As the drug is absorbed by the leaky blood vessels in the eye, the leaky blood vessels are sealed. However, this treatment still causes scar tissue to form.
Another treatment option for wet AMD is a low vision rehabilitation program. This program can help people who are losing vision due to the disease learn to adapt to changing vision and adapt their surroundings. This can help people with wet AMD manage their daily activities and adapt to the change in their vision. The program can also teach people how to use magnifying devices and modify their surroundings.
Other treatment options for wet AMD include angiogenesis inhibitors and laser surgery. While these treatments are promising, they are unlikely to restore vision in most patients. However, the combination of these treatments may slow the disease’s progression and prevent further vision loss.
Preventing macular degeneration
Despite the fact that age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of visual loss in older adults, there are many things that can be done to reduce the risk of developing this eye condition. One of these things is to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle. Eating a healthy diet includes consuming plenty of fruits and vegetables. You should also avoid smoking and maintain a healthy blood pressure.
Macular degeneration occurs when the macula, a small section of the retina in the back of the eye, begins to deteriorate. It is the part of the eye responsible for central vision, which allows you to read and recognize faces. It is also the part of the eye that allows you to see fine details in objects. You can develop macular degeneration in both eyes.
There are many causes of macular degeneration. One of these causes is oxidative damage to the macula. Oxidative damage occurs when the body is exposed to free radicals, which are produced by cellular processes and the environment. Free radicals can damage the macula and prevent essential nutrients from reaching the retina. You can reduce the risk of macular degeneration by eating a healthy diet and taking antioxidant supplements. You should also consult with your doctor before taking a supplement.
Another cause of macular degeneration is excessive exposure to UV light. Using sunglasses is recommended. Sunglasses with a UV 400 label can help block ultraviolet light. However, sunglasses are not a complete shield from UV rays. If you are exposed to UV rays, you should consult with your doctor to find out what steps you can take to prevent macular degeneration.
Genetics plays an important role in the development of macular degeneration. Researchers have found that there are several genes that increase the risk of developing the disease. These genes affect a particular protein, which causes cells to produce a protein that destroys the macula. If there is a family history of macular degeneration, you should watch for early signs of the disease. You can also have a genetic test performed to see if you are at an increased risk of developing the disease.
Smoking and elevated blood pressure are also risk factors for macular degeneration. Smoking can increase the production of free radicals, which can damage the macula. To prevent macular degeneration, you should quit smoking and control your blood pressure. If you are a smoker, it may be beneficial to quit smoking as soon as possible.
Taking antioxidant vitamins and supplements can also help prevent macular degeneration. Foods that contain antioxidants include leafy greens, broccoli, kiwi, and grapes. You can also consume flaxseed oil, walnuts, and oysters. Zinc has also been shown to reduce the risk of macular degeneration. You can also consume omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in salmon, soybeans, and walnuts.