Macular Degeneration

Macular Degeneration is a disease that gradually destroys the central macula region of the eye, causing blurriness or a blind spot. The macula is responsible for viewing fine detail. As such, it is used in activities such as reading, driving, or recognising details on faces. Developing macular degeneration causes increasing difficulty with these sorts of activities.

Because this eye condition becomes more prevalent as we age, it is often called Age-Related Macular Degeneration, or AMD. This is the most common cause of serious loss of vision or ‘legal blindness” as we age.

Types of macular degeneration

There are two types of macular degeneration that can occur separately, or together.

1. Geographical Atrophy

is commonly known as dry macular degeneration. This involves the progressive loss of macular tissue. There is currently no known medical treatment for the dry AMD condition. There are, however, well-controlled scientific studies which suggest a small daily dose of saffron in your diet may be beneficial.

2. Neovascular Macular Degeneration

or wet AMD. This involves the growth of new blood vessels that leak fluid into the macula and cause the degradation of vision. Treatment is available for wet AMD through the injection of various drugs into the eye. It is important that treatment take place as early as possible in order to prevent or minimise permanent damage.

The Amsler Grid

The Amsler Grid test chart is common method to aid in diagnosing macular degeneration. The grid consists of a precisely-sized grid of lines with a spot at the centre. Against this grid, it is possible to see any warping of the lines, cloudiness, or dark regions that may indicate degeneration of your macula.

Whilst self-diagnosis of macular degeneration is possible using a home-printed Amsler Grid, correct sizing and use of the grid is critical. For this reason, we recommend visiting us for a free copy of the original Amsler Grid (white lines on a black background) and a quick lesson in how it should be properly used.

Book an optometrist appointment now for your free Amsler Grid and Macular Degeneration test.

Unit 1, 7a Wentworth Street Manly NSW 2095

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