Macular degeneration progresses slowly and often asymptomatically until you notice significant difficulty seeing. It’s the leading cause of blindness in the United States, and though some young and middle-aged adults are diagnosed with macular degeneration, the condition primarily affects those ages 65 and older.
Because of the age factor, macular degeneration usually refers to a condition called age-related macular degeneration, or AMD.
AMD is not curable, but it is treatable. Eye specialists like our experts at Pacific Eye’s six locations can help you preserve your eyesight for as long as possible.
AMD presents in one of two main ways: dry (non-neovascular) or wet (neovascular).
Dry macular degeneration
The more common of the two, dry AMD involves changes in the pigmented cells of your eye. Changes in pigmentation may include areas of depigmentation, clumps of pigment, and drusen (yellow deposits under your retina). You may also develop macular atrophy and scarring with dry AMD.
Wet macular degeneration
Wet AMD only accounts for about 10-15% of all macular degeneration cases. This form of the condition is characterized by the formation of new blood vessels under your retina. These new vessels leak blood and fluid into your eye because they are so fragile, and this results in tissue damage and scarring.
Symptoms of macular degeneration
Whether you have dry or wet AMD, you may experience a range of vision-related symptoms. Look out for these signs of macular degeneration:
- Blurred vision
- Distorted vision (straight lines look bent)
- Loss of farsighted vision
- Trouble reading small print
- Altered color vision (colors look less bright)
- Trouble looking at or around lights, such as street lights
- Difficulty adapting to new light levels
- Seeing spots
- Large deposits of drusen
As macular degeneration progresses, your symptoms may worsen. You may find it difficult to recognize familiar faces, read or write, pinpoint objects at a distance, or drive.
Our experienced staff at Pacific Eye knows how frustrating and saddening macular degeneration can be for both the patient and their family. We do everything we can to preserve your eyesight for as long as possible and keep you out of pain.
If you notice any of the symptoms above or simply have trouble with your vision, visit one of our six Pacific Eye locations today for a comprehensive evaluation. Early detection is the best way to prevent fast progression of macular degeneration.
Call Pacific Eye or request an appointment online today through this website.