test

SCROLL DOWN

What is age-related macular degeneration?

Learn more about vision correction

10
Oct
2016

If you’ve been diagnosed with age-related macular degeneration, you’re not alone. In the UK, over 600,000 people are affected with the condition, and is one of the leading causes of severe vision loss in people over 60.

600,000 people are diagnosed with age-related macular degeneration

You may not notice any change in your vision during the early stages, especially if you have AMD in only one eye. However, as macular cells deteriorate, your ability to see clearly will change and your vision will become increasingly blurred, which means:

  • Reading becomes difficult
  • Colours appear less vibrant
  • People’s faces are difficult to recognise
  • Straight lines such as door frames and lampposts may appear distorted or bent
  • Objects in front of you may change shape, size, colour or seem to move or disappear
  • Dark spots, such as a smudge on glasses, could appear in the centre of your vision
  • You may find bright light glaring and uncomfortable
  • You may find it difficult to adapt from dark to light environments
  • Words might disappear when you are reading

Macular degeneration occurs when the small central portion of the retina, known as the macula, deteriorates. The retina is the light-sensing nerve tissue at the back of the eye. It gets the name ‘age-related’ macular degeneration as the disease tends to develop as a person ages. This sight loss usually happens gradually over time, although it can sometimes be rapid. AMD doesn’t affect your peripheral vision (side vision), which means it will not cause complete blindness.  

Man eye test with light for laser eye surgery

There are two main types of age-related macular degeneration:

Dry AMD

Most people who have macular degeneration have the dry form. Dry AMD causes a gradual deterioration of the macula, usually, over many years, as the retinal cells die off and are not regenerated. With dry macular degeneration, vision loss is usually gradual. People who develop dry macular degeneration must carefully and constantly monitor their central vision. If you notice any changes in your vision, you should tell your ophthalmologist right away, as the dry form can change into the more damaging form of macular degeneration called wet macular degeneration. Around 10 to 15% of people with dry AMD go on to develop wet AMD.

Wet AMD

Wet AMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels begin to grow underneath the retina and leak blood or fluid which leads to scarring of the macula. This can lead to blurring or distorting central vision. Vision loss from this form of macular degeneration is usually a lot faster and more noticeable than that from dry macular degeneration. The longer these abnormal vessels leak or grow, the more risk you have of losing more of your vision. The earlier the wet macular degeneration is diagnosed and treated, the better chance you have of preserving some of your vision.

How is dry AMD treated?

Unfortunately, there isn’t a proven treatment for the dry form of AMD. However studies suggest that antioxidant vitamins and zinc may reduce the impact of macular degeneration in some people by slowing its progression toward more advanced stages. There’s no definitive proof that this will be effective for everyone with dry AMD, but they do also offer a number of other important health benefits so there’s not harm in increasing your intake. 

You may also wish to try:

  • Magnifying lenses
  • Large-print books
  • Very bright reading lights
  • Screen-reading software on your computer so you can read emails and documents, and browse the internet

magnifying lens to help dry macular degeneration

How is wet AMD treated?

Fortunately for people with wet macular degeneration, there are treatment options available. These are aimed at sealing off the leaking blood vessels (with a laser and light sensitive drug) and preventing the blood vessels from growing back:

  • Anti-VEGF medication – to prevent the growth of new blood vessels in the eye
  • Laser surgery – to destroy abnormal blood vessels in the eye

laser eye surgery can treat wet macular degeneration

Can you prevent AMD from occurring?

Unfortunately you can’t prevent age-related macular degeneration from happening. However, you should have regular eye exams as this will help you find out if you are at risk, and you’ll also be able to detect it early if you do develop it – and early detection can sometimes delay loss of vision.


By: David

If you are interested in vision correction at Focus Clinic please call us on 0207 307 8250 and book a free consultation.

Book your FREE consultation
Related Articles
  • Tech-Contact-Lenses

    Smart tech comes to contact lenses

      One in every nineteen people suffer from diabetes today, and this number is set to rise as our lifestyles and eating habits become more unhealthy. By 2035 it is predicted that this number will rise to one in ten. An important part of caring for and managing diabetes it getting your blood sugar levels […]

    Learn more
  • how much does laser eye surgery cost

    Age 31 to 40 and driving glasses

    Those in their 30s who need glasses for short-sight, with or without astigmatism, are the largest group seeking laser eye surgery. They usually wear glasses or contact lenses throughout the day, or sometimes just for driving and watching TV or a film if the myopia is mild. Most short-sighted and astigmatic prescriptions are stable by the age […]

    Learn more
  • tetris improves vision

    TETRIS improves vision?

    Many people believe that computer games can be detrimental to your vision, but surprisingly the addictive puzzle game Tetris can help to improve Amblyopia, commonly known as ‘Lazy Eye’. Amblyopia occurs when the nerves that connect one of the eyes to the brain develop incorrectly as a child. As a result, blurry or wrong images […]

    Learn more
  • feel the need to close your eyes

    Dry Eye Disease: An Increase of the Disease in Children Linked to Smartphone Use

    Have you ever experienced pain, irritation or dryness in your eyes without any real explanation? Or, ever had sore and uncomfortable eyes after a screen-filled day at work and put it down to being tired? You could be one of 300 million people who suffer from periods of dry eye disease. What is it? Linked […]

    Learn more
  • smart glasses

    The new smart glasses: you’ve never seen or heard anything like it

    We all know that glasses help us read more easily, but did you know there will soon be smart glasses that can read out loud what’s written in front of us on paper? A new Japanese company called Oton Glass are currently developing a pair of glasses that will be able to convert text into […]

    Learn more
  • firework night

    Remember remember the 5th November, and to protect your eyesight of course

    Now Halloween is out the way, we look to the coming weekend to celebrate Guy Fawkes night, commonly known as bonfire or firework night. With shops stocked up full of firecrackers and fountains, it’s easy to forget about the precautions we need to take to protect our vision. Fireworks are a spectacular show, and whilst […]

    Learn more
  • blind people

    A blind world: Number of blind people could half with sight-saving surgery

    There are approximately 39 million blind people in the world. But did you know that more than half of them needn’t be blind? Their blindness is curable if they could only get the sight-saving surgery they need. Here at Focus, we want to raise awareness of world blindness. Using International Council of Ophthalmology data we have […]

    Learn more
  • The Principle Causes of Blindness

    The Principle Causes of Blindness Worldwide

    Worldwide, over 285 million people are estimated to be visually impaired: 39 million are blind and 246 million have low vision. About 90% of the world’s visually impaired live in low-income settings and 82% of people living with blindness are aged 50 and above. So what can cause Blindness? Multiple afflictions can affect the same […]

    Learn more
  • shutterstock_330511832

    Microbial Keratitis: Contact Lens infection vs LASIK

    New research has found that if you wear contact lenses for 10 years, you’re six times more likely to develop a sight-threatening infection than if you’d had laser eye surgery. Can you radically reduce these risks by ditching contact lenses and opting to go under the laser to correct your vision instead? According to scientists at […]

    Learn more
  • 1920-1200

    Bluetooth glasses or laser eye surgery?

    Bluetooth glasses or laser eye surgery? Do you find that you keep misplacing your glasses? Or do you have several pairs dotted around the house, car and office, so that you so do not find yourself without them? Phone Halo thinks that they have found a solution. They have designed a special pair of glasses […]

    Learn more
  • laser eye surgery consultation

    Eye tracking

    Eye tracking is the measurement of eye activity. Where do we look? What do we ignore? When do we blink? It is becoming more and more common place within a variety of technologies from gaze controlled mobile phones and televisions to diagnosing brain disorders. Here are a few of its uses:   Laser Vision Correction […]

    Learn more
  • Can you spot the robin perched in this herd of reindeer?

    Can you spot the robin perched in this herd of reindeer?

    The holidays are coming and what better way to get in the festive spirit than with an eye-boggling brain teaser. Can you spot the Robin? With the biggest Christmas adverts of the year now released spreading festive cheer across the country, we have come up with this eye-boggling brain teaser that asks challengers to to spot […]

    Learn more
  • spot potential sight issues

    How to spot potential sight issues in Children

    Most children won’t have any idea that they have a vision problem, so it’s up to us to be vigilant when it comes to noticing signs of potential trouble.

    Learn more
  • Bionic lens

    Bionic Lens…you’ve never seen anything like it

    We all crave 20/20 vision and envy those that have it, but is it a thing of the past as technology finds something even better with the Bionic Lens? A Canadian company called Ocumetics Technology Corporation are in the stages of clinically testing their Bionic Lens. The device replaces the natural human lens with a […]

    Learn more
  • Does LASIK wear off?

    Does LASIK wear off?

    Does LASIK wear off? What do we know about long-term effects of LASIK? It’s been around 25 years – is that really enough time to discern long-term effects? Yes, it would appear so. There are rare changes that have been observed up to 2 years after treatment (and which are treatable), otherwise we haven’t seen any other effects, […]

    Learn more
  • the 30 most iconic sunglasses of all time

    The 30 Most Iconic Sunglasses of All Time

    Monday the 27th June is National Sunglasses day, so we thought we'd take a look back at the most iconic sunglasses (and their wearers)!

    Learn more
  • burning smell

    Burning smell during laser eye surgery? Don’t worry, your eyes aren’t burning

    Heard of a burning smell during laser eye surgery? Don’t worry your eyes aren’t burning! One of the main myths about laser eye surgery is that the burning smell many experience during their procedure means your eyes are burning.  You may have read comments such as “I could smell burning during the treatment” and been […]

    Learn more
  • misleading low prices of laser eye surgery

    The Misleading Prices of Laser Eye Surgery

    Adverts can be confusing, especially when it comes to pricing, so when we hear of low price laser eye surgery is it really what it seems or is it too good to be true?

    Learn more
  • myopia epidemic

    The Myopia Epidemic Across The World: Which countries suffer the most and least?

    Over 80 million children are affected by the myopia epidemic and the economic cost is estimated at an annual $268 billion worldwide. What is myopia? Myopia, also known as nearsightedness, is a refractive error in your eye.  This means that the eye does not refract light properly to a single focus, which enabled you to […]

    Learn more
  • synesthesia

    Synesthesia: The blending of the senses

    Have you ever looked at the number three and decided that its colour is red? Or perhaps you’ve been at a concert and the sound of the guitar you can actually feel on the side of your arm, whilst the vocalist you can feel on your right ankle? These experiences may be a sign you […]

    Learn more
  • common cold

    Full of cold? Don’t forget your eyes are affected too!

    With the downpour of snow this week, followed by the rising stress of getting everything sorted for Christmas, many of us may have become a little run down and as a result developed the annoying winter cold we all seem to get once a year. Whilst we think of the common cold mainly affecting our […]

    Learn more
  • laser eye surgery recovery

    Laser eye surgery recovery: how long does it take?

    Laser eye surgery recovery: how long does it take? If you are thinking of undertaking laser eye surgery, planning your recovery and a suitable time to have the treatment will be very important. Most patients (about 97%) who come to Focus Clinic choose to have LASIK treatment. This laser eye surgery recovery is a fast treatment, […]

    Learn more
  • Sunlight and Your Eyes

    Sunlight and Your Eyes

    We often take our eyes for granted. They are an essential part of our overall health and one of the most important out of all of our senses. We are often told to avoid sunlight to protect our eyesight, but why should we listen to this advice? Sunlight and myopia: Myopia is the official name […]

    Learn more
  • Children's Eyes

    Parents to protect children’s eyes by monitoring digital usage

    Most of us don’t go a day without using a digital screen, whether it’s at work on a computer, reading off a tablet or tending to our smartphone – and now younger and younger children’s eyes are being exposed to digital screens, threatening their vision. Tablets and phones have replaced the TV as a way […]

    Learn more
  • New

    The bionic eye

    Is science fiction becoming a reality? After years of intensive engineering a bionic eye has been approved for commercial use. Named the Argus II, it is a device that can improve sight for individuals who can see virtually nothing, making previously impossible tasks attainable. People with certain types of blindness can go from seeing virtually […]

    Learn more
  • 7 things to know about styes

    7 Things to Know About Styes

    Did you know that there are two types of the common stye, and they’re caused by a natural bacteria on our skin that we coexist with every day? What is a stye? A stye is a small and painful inflammation that appears as a lump on the inside or outside of the eyelid. They can […]

    Learn more
  • What is Presbyopia

    What is presbyopia?

    Reading glasses and surgical options You can’t escape Presbyopia, the medical term for the loss of reading vision in middle age. Sadly, it will happen to us all eventually. Even if you’ve never had a vision problem before. It usually occurs around the ages of 45-50 in the UK, and earlier in warmer and more […]

    Learn more
  • focusHeader-1920-1200-1

    Helping those who cannot see, with science

    Helping those who cannot see, with science Scientists from Cambridge University say that they have successfully managed to print new eye cells. These cells could be used to treat and cure certain types of blindness. this Bio-printing technology is the first step towards using 3D printer technology to create artificial tissue, and is currently being […]

    Learn more
  • Astigmatism In Children

    Astigmatism in children: what are the warning signs?

    Astigmatism is a common condition where the cornea or lens of the eye isn’t a perfect curve, causing blurred or distorted vision. Like nearsightedness and farsightedness, astigmatism is a refractive error, meaning it’s not an eye disease or eye health problem - it’s simply a problem with how the eye focuses on light.

    Learn more
  • how to accentuate your eye colour

    How to accentuate your eye colour after laser eye surgery

    People choose to have laser eye surgery for a variety of different reasons. To avoid the hassle of glasses and contact lenses, to gain freedom to fully enjoy sporting pursuits or to simply gain a confidence boost. Whatever your motivation, you will probably find that you will be showing off your beautiful eyes for the very […]

    Learn more
Get in touch
Thank you for getting in touch with Focus. Your message is on its way and one of our friendly team will be in touch shortly!
Reviews

Victoria

17th Jun

victoria

'I felt completely confident in Dr. Allamby’s abilities'

close
close
big close

Book a free* consultation

There is a refundable admin fee of £25 for consultations during the week and £50 for consultations in the weekend. This will be returned to you when you attend the appointment.
Thank you for getting in touch with Focus. Your message is on its way and one of our friendly team will be in touch shortly!

Would you rather speak to someone?

*Opening Times:
Monday - Friday: 9am – 6pm Saturday: 9am – 3pm

Would you rather speak to someone?

Call: 0207 307 8250

to arrange your free* consultation
There is a refundable admin fee of £25 for consultations during the week and £50 for consultations in the weekend. This will be returned to you when you attend the appointment.
Mr Samer Hamada
laser and lens eye surgery specialist
 Samar Hamada