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Macular degeneration typically affects individuals over the age of 60. It is characterized by the progressive deterioration of the center of the retina, known as the macula. Our Wauchula, Arcadia, and Sebring optometrists can diagnose your AMD and help you preserve your vision.
Types of Macular Degeneration (AMD)
Macular degeneration is classified as either wet or dry, with dry AMD being more common than wet.
Dry AMD creates drusen on the macula, which are yellow deposits. In the beginning, dry AMD does not cause vision loss. However, if it is left untreated, the yellow deposits become bigger, causing distorted or dim vision. In the later stages, dry AMD can become wet AMD.
Wet AMD occurs when the body starts to grow new blood vessels under the macula. These blood vessels are not as robust as the original blood vessels in the retina and usually leak, causing changes in the central vision.
Symptoms of Macular Degeneration
Risk Factors for AMD
Ocular coherence tomography (OCT) works similarly to ultrasound technology, except instead of using sound, it uses wavelengths of light. OCT creates high-resolution digital images of the retina. The machine is able to take cross-section images of the various tissues of the eye, and it can calculate the thickness of your macula and the retinal nerve fiber layer.
With this technology, we are able to diagnose AMD and other problems with your retina in order to give you a thorough diagnosis of your retina problem and how far the disease has progressed.
Our Wauchula, Arcadia and Sebring eye clinics can diagnose and help slow the progression of the disease. If you have early AMD, we may recommend annual monitoring to keep track of its progression.
If you have moderate or advanced AMD, certain medications can stop new blood vessels from growing under the retina and stop existing blood vessels from leaking.
Studies by the National Eye Institute have shown that certain vitamins can slow the progression of wet and dry AMD and the associated vision loss. For this reason, our eye doctors may recommend increasing your intake of Vitamin C and E as well as other vitamins and minerals.
Depending on your severity, we may also recommend laser therapy or surgery, visual aids or retinal translocation.
It is important to note that AMD rarely results in total vision loss, but it can significantly impact your vision. For this reason, we recommend annual eye exams and eye exams anytime you notice a change in your vision.
To schedule an appointment with one of our Wauchula, Arcadia, and Sebring optometrists, call us at 863-259-3777.