Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is characterized by the loss of central vision. It is the leading cause of blindness in people over 65 in the U.S. When you lose your central vision your peripheral vision still works fine, but you cannot see straight ahead. Faces become obscured and reading becomes difficult or impossible.
What is Macular Degeneration?
It is progressive damage to the macula of the eye. The macula is the center of the retina. When AMD becomes advanced abnormal blood vessels can form under the macula causing rapid deterioration of vision.
Symptoms of Macular Degeneration
- Shadows, dark spots, or empty spots in the center of your vision
- Color distortion or faded colors
- Difficulty recognizing faces
- Lines or text appearing wavy
- Needing very bright light for close vision such as when reading or sewing
- Difficulty adapting to low light
If you experience these symptoms you should talk to your ophthalmologist right away. Most AMD progresses slowly, but the symptoms of AMD can also be symptoms of other retinal problems, or wet macular degeneration which can rob you of your vision very quickly if left untreated.
AMD Treatment and Prevention
Generally, AMD treatment stops or slows the progression, preserving the eyesight you have left. The sooner you start treatment, the better your chances of retaining your vision.
Nutritional support is used in the early stages. Some patients even report an improvement in vision. The same eye-healthy nutrients used to treat AMD can also prevent its development.
When AMD is advanced, some drugs can prevent the formation of abnormal blood vessels and the severe and rapid vision loss that they cause.
To save your eyesight, please contact a qualified eye doctor in your area today if you are experiencing the symptoms of AMD.