Macular Degeneration FAQs
At Saratoga Vision, we usually receive many questions from our Saratoga Springs, NY clients about macular degeneration. Since we are passionate about providing our patients quality care, we have put together some frequently asked questions about macular degeneration to help you better understand and learn more about how we can help.
What is macular degeneration?
Macular degeneration is a degenerative eye condition that damages the macula (the part of the eye that helps with central vision). When your macula is damaged, you will maintain side vision, but your central vision becomes distorted.
What are the symptoms of macular degeneration?
Because macular degeneration causes damage to the light-sensing cells of the macula, most of the symptoms you experience involve central vision. To that end, most patients with macular degeneration complain of blurry central vision. As such, you may have difficulties reading the fine print, recognizing people far away, or have trouble performing day-to-day activities.
Other symptoms include:
- Sensitivity to light
- Straight lines appearing wavy
- The need to increase light to read
- Seeing a dark spot on the central vision
Since these symptoms mimic macular dystrophy symptoms, it’s essential to see our eye doctors as soon as possible for an accurate diagnosis.
Who is at risk of macular degeneration?
Although anyone can be at risk of developing macular degeneration, individuals over the age of 50 are at more risk. Other risk factors that can put you at risk include smoking and family history.
Are there two types of macular degeneration?
There is dry and wet macular degeneration. Dry macular degeneration is the most common, accounting for 85 to 90% of all macular degeneration cases. Dry macular degeneration involves a buildup of small, yellow deposits referred to as drusen. While these deposits can be seen in normal people, having drusen increases the rate of macula deterioration.
Wet macular degeneration occurs when blood vessels form behind the retina, leaking blood and other fluids. The leakage causes scarring of the retina, leading to distorted central vision.
Does macular degeneration affect both eyes?
Initially, one eye may be affected, but both eyes may suffer the same fate as the disease progresses. Ultimately, if someone has macular degeneration in one eye, the other eye is more likely to be affected.
What are the treatment options available for macular degeneration?
While there is no known cure available for macular degeneration, laser surgery, vitamin therapy, and photodynamic therapy can help slow its progression. However, the key to optimal macular degeneration treatment is an early diagnosis.
Contact Us for Quality Eye Care from Our Optometrists in Saratoga Springs, NY
Do you believe you are suffering from macular degeneration? If you live in or around the Saratoga Springs area, schedule an appointment with our professional staff at Saratoga Vision for a thorough assessment. Our optometrists will help you manage your macular degeneration to ensure optimal vision for your daily life.