Age-Related Macular Degeneration – Know Its Common Types!

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By Dr. Anand Palimkar , Ophthalmology

AMD i.e. Age-related Macular Degeneration severely impairs your vision because of retina disorientation. This condition is chronic and incurable but treatments such as vision aids, laser therapy, vitamins and medications are available. People diagnosed with AMD are usually 60 years of age or above. The name comes from the macula, i.e. a small area in the centre of the retina, which deteriorates with age. Although it is a painless condition and doesn’t cause complete blindness, it does gravely damage your vision. Obesity, smoking, high consumption of unsaturated fat, lack of exercise and high blood pressure increase your risk of AMD.

Research suggests that antioxidant vitamins and other nutrients may reduce the progression of AMD among people with high risk of vision loss from macular degeneration.

Types-

There are two types of AMD.

1. Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration:

Although only 10% of all the people who develop AMD suffer from the wet form, they contribute to the majority of those with serious vision impairment. This is because of the abnormal blood vessels under the macula leak blood or fluid into it. The wet type of AMD always progresses from the dry type; hence, it is important to get treatment for AMD to limit its effect and severity.

2. Dry Age-Related Macular Degeneration Form:

Dry Macular Degeneration is caused due to the thinning of macula that is responsible for the clarity of vision in the direct line of sight. It is more common than wet AMD but less severe.

Symptoms:

Unless AMD progresses and/or affects both the eyes, the symptoms are usually overlooked. The two main symptoms of AMD include:

1. Dark and blurry areas at the center of your vision

2. Changed or diminished perception of color

Treatments:

  1. Anti-angiogenesis drugs
  2. Vitamins such as zinc and copper, beta-carotene, and vitamins C and E.
  3. Laser Therapy
  4. Photodynamic Laser Therapy
  5. Low vision Aids
  6. Submacular Surgery
  7. Retinal Translocation

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