Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration, also known as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), is the leading cause of irreversible vision loss among the elderly. It is caused by the deterioration of the macula, the small central part of the retina. Although this condition often has little or no early symptoms, it manifests as an increasing loss of vision in the central part of the visual field. It may affect one or both eyes. There are two types of AMD: dry form and wet form. Those with the dry form have yellow deposits in their retina; such clumps may multiply and become bigger. The wet form is characterized by blood vessels which leak fluid into the retina. Risk factors for macular degeneration are advanced age, smoking, and family genetics. Unfortunately, there is no cure although taking health supplements may be a means of delaying its advance.

For example, a 61-year-old patient who is also suffering from hypertension has been seeing straight lines as wavy and his eye exam revealed that he has yellow spots under his retina. He was then diagnosed with dry macular degeneration.

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