Age related macular degeneration (AMD) is a deterioration of the central vision area
of the retina called the macula. The macula is responsible for our fine central
detailed vision. Although the exact cause of AMD is not known, it is thought to
be an accelerated by the aging process. The risk of developing macular degeneration
increases with age, family history, vascular status, active smokers, and lifetime
There are two forms of age related macular degeneration, a "wet" type, and a "dry"
type. The "dry" type has a better prognosis. On average, this condition is slowly
progressive and functional vision is maintained. Although there is no cure for dry
macular degeneration, treatment is available. Nutritional supplements, protection
from ultraviolet radiation, special medications, and laser treatment are all considerations
depending on the degree of advancement of the condition. Careful monitoring is imperative
to track possible advancement.
In the wet type of macular degeneration, abnormal blood vessels grow in the macular
region causing leakage, bleeding, and scarring. Although there is no cure for wet
macular degeneration, new treatments have proven to be effective for some in slowing,
or stopping, the progression of the disease. Therapeutic injections, nutritional
supplements, protection from ultraviolet radiation, special medications, and laser
treatments are all considerations depending on the degree of advancement of the condition.
This condition must be closely monitored for possible advancement.