Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a condition which affects central vision and imaging.
In AMD clear images may start to blur or turn into dark spots, and/or straight lines may appear distorted or curved. This condition mainly occurs amongst the older people ageing 50 years and above. AMD is one of the major causes of partial blindness in the elderly population. There are two types of AMD:
Dry form is determined by the accumulation of yellow deposits. It accounts for 90 per cent of the cases.
Wet form is verified by irregular development of blood vessels, causing leakage of blood and fluid in the retina.
The symptoms to detect AMD are:
- Need a bright light for reading
- Blurring of text during reading
- After exposure to a bright light, it takes longer to get back on a normal visual function
- The less vibrant visual appearance of colours
- Difficulty in face recognition of people
- Hazy and unclear vision
Symptoms of Wet AMD are more progressive in comparison to Dry AMD. The exact causes for AMD are unknown but there are a number of risk factors which increases the chances of AMD in people.
Overweight, elevated blood pressure, smoking, obesity, age, race, genetics etc. plays a key role in the occurrence of AMD. People those who consume more saturated fats have a higher risk of developing AMD. However, by controlling the diet habits and making lifestyle adjustments, these risks can be reduced.
There are a wide range of treatment options available for those suffering from age-related macular degeneration.
Anti-angiogenic Drugs: These drugs are injected into the eye to stop the formation of new blood vessels, leaking from abnormal vessels that cause wet macular degeneration.
Laser Therapy: Laser therapy is another option available. A high energy laser can destroy growing abnormal vessels causing AMD.
Photodynamic Laser Therapy: This two-step treatment uses light sensitive drugs to damage abnormal blood vessels. After injecting medication, doctors send laser into the eye to activate the drug, which damages abnormal blood vessels.