Macular degeneration is the leading cause of severe, irreversible vision loss in the United States. The practitioners at West Broward Eyecare Associates provide innovative, safe, and effective macular degeneration treatments to help prevent progression of this degenerative eye condition. Call the office in Tamarac, Florida, or schedule an appointment online to learn more.
Macular Degeneration Specialist Q & A
Macular degeneration is diagnosed when the central portion of the retina, the macula, deteriorates. The macula allows the eye to process images sharply and distinctly.
Usually, degeneration occurs when the cones in the macula don’t regenerate properly, resulting in a deterioration of vision. First associated with aging, macular degeneration is increasingly seen in younger people as well.
What are the types of macular degeneration?
Many cases of macular degeneration start with a lesion called drusen. As your cones continue to degenerate, more and more of these scar-like lesions develop. This is “dry” macular degeneration, which makes up 90% of cases.
A less common, but more devastating, form of macular degeneration, called “wet” macular degeneration, occurs when new blood vessels start to grow into the damaged area and bleed into the macula. Wet macular degeneration is more likely to lead to vision loss.
What are the signs of macular degeneration?
With macular degeneration, you first lose your ability to see fine details like faces, read a book, or perceive colors.
Symptoms you may experience that suggest macular degeneration include:
- Dark, blurred areas in the center of your vision
- Decreased sharpness and clarity of vision
- Diminished or changed color perception
At first, your vision may just seem blurry, and it’s harder to read menus and other small print. You may have trouble seeing while driving, especially at night.
If you experience any of these symptoms, call West Broward Eyecare Associates. The doctors may also diagnose the beginning stages of macular degeneration during a regular eye exam.
How is macular degeneration treated?
Early dry macular degeneration can be treated with nutritional therapy. High antioxidant intake supports the cells of the macula. Vision support to correct failing eyesight is also available.
For wet macular degeneration, the providers at West Broward Eyecare Associates offer state-of-the-art forms of laser photocoagulation. The treatment seals leaking blood vessels to minimize vision damage. You may also benefit from anti-VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) medication. This is the most common and effective clinical treatment, and it involves periodic injections of a chemical into the eye to seal the blood vessels.
To get evaluated for macular degeneration, call West Broward Eyecare Associates or schedule an appointment online.