The leading cause of vision loss in people over the age of 60 is age-related macular degeneration (AMD). This condition can cause irreversible vision loss with the possibility of blindness. Since AMD is a serious condition, annual eye exams are needed to detect it at the early stages to prevent further loss of vision. If you live in Boston, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, or Arlington, have your eyes examined by our optometry professional at Eyes Over Copley.
What Is Macular Degeneration?
Macular degeneration occurs when the macula, which is the center part of the retina that allows you to see clearly in your direct line of sight, deteriorates. While AMD often doesn't result in complete blindness, it can cause a significant loss of vision.
Who Is At Risk For Macular Degeneration?
Anyone can develop this condition, however, some factors can increase your risk.
- Studies have shown that this condition runs in the family.
- AMD is most common in Caucasians.
- Smoking greatly increases your chances of getting macular degeneration.
What Are the Symptoms Of Macular Degeneration?
In the early stages, this condition shows no signs. As the disease progresses, you can begin to experience the following symptoms:
- Seeing straight lines as being bent
- Reduced vision in your line of sight
- Trouble adapting to dim lights
- Needing brighter lights when doing close-up work
- Blurriness of printed words
- Fading colors
- Difficulty recognizing faces
How Is This Macular Degeneration Diagnosed?
AMD can be caught during an annual eye exam. Our optometrist will dilate your eyes to get a good look at the back of the retina. Our eye doctor will also check for yellow deposits in the retina called drusen. These deposits are usually an indication of AMD. An Amsler grid test can also be used to see if the condition has caused your vision to become distorted.
How Is Macular Degeneration Treated?
There is no cure for macular degeneration. However, you prevent it by avoiding smoking, protecting your eyes from UV lights, and changing your diet and exercise. Prescription medicine provided by our eye doctor can slow the AMD progression. Other treatments may include injections, photodynamic therapy, or laser surgery. The type of treatment method you will get depends on the severity of your condition.
Many serious diseases of the eye, such macular degeneration, show no early symptoms and can cause permanent vision loss. This is why regular eye care visits with our doctor of optometry at Eyes Over Copley are essential. We treat patients in Boston, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, Arlington and surrounding areas. To schedule an appointment with our eye doctor, give us a call today at (617) 859-0630