Macular degeneration – also called age-related macular degeneration or AMD – is an eye disease that gradually destroys central vision. It is caused by the breakdown of the macula (the small but crucial central part of the retina). Symptoms include blurred vision, seeing straight lines as wavy, and difficulty seeing details (whether close-up or far away). Macular degeneration may lead to blindness if left untreated. The best way to prevent further deterioration is early diagnosis and treatment.
Other ways to reduce your chance for vision loss from macular degeneration include:
- knowing the risk factors for AMD,
- knowing your family medical history, and
- keeping regular appointments with an ophthalmologist.
If you are aware of your risks you can save your sight.
The top 5 risk factors for AMD are:
- Being age 60 or older
- Having and kind of family history of AMD
- Being a smoker
- Being obese
- Having hypertension
People with two of these risk factors should schedule an appointment. We can recommend steps to reduce your risk of vision loss.
People who are at risk should know the symptoms of wet AMD, the form most likely to cause rapid and serious vision loss. Symptoms of wet AMD include:
- sudden, noticeable loss of vision, or
- sudden distortion of vision, such as seeing “wavy” lines.
Please see us right away if these symptoms occur. There are treatments for wet AMD that provide an excellent chance of stopping your vision loss. They may actually restore some vision when macular degeneration develops. Earlier diagnosis of wet AMD gives a better chance of successful treatment.
If you believe you may be suffering from macular degeneration, please contact the specialists at North Georgia Eye Clinic today.