Age Related Macular Degen.

Age Related Macular Degeneration Lethbridge

What is AMD?

AMD (Age-related Macular Degeneration) is a leading cause of vision loss in patients over the age of 60 and is related to the breakdown of the eye’s macula. This is a central area on the retina, responsible for central vision and for allowing you to see fine details clearly. There are two types of AMD:

  • Dry-Form - Approximately 90% of patients suffer from this type of AMD, where the breakdown of the macula is a slow and gradual process.
  • Wet-Form - 10% of patients develop the wet form of AMD in which weakened blood vessels result in sudden blood leakage, affecting vision.

AMD Causes

There are several risk factors associated with the development of AMD. These include:

  • Age
  • A family history of age­related macular degeneration
  • Smoking
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol levels

AMD Symptoms

In its early stages, AMD rarely presents any visible symptoms and is often never detected until during a comprehensive eye exam. That’s why we encourage all of our patients, especially those at risk for AMD, to schedule regular vision tests. Some of the signs of AMD include:

  • Blurry vision (distance and reading)
  • Black, grey or blank spots in your vision
  • Loss of central vision
  • Distortion of straight lines
  • Change in color perception

AMD Treatment Options

There is no cure for age related macular degeneration but there are several, very successful, treatment options available to prevent the severe vision loss associated with this eye condition.

  • Dry-Form AMD - Treatment options for this type of AMD include vitamin supplements, changes to lifestyle including wearing sunglasses, increasing daily exercise and quitting smoking.
  • Wet-Form AMD - The treatment of the wet-form of AMD involves injections of medication into the eye to stop the abnormal blood vessels from leaking. This treatment has a very high success rate and must be repeated during follow-up visits.

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