At Prestera Eye Medical Group in San Marcos, we are proud to aid patients who are suffering from macular degeneration and experiencing loss of vision. Dr. Tory Prestera and Dr. Kevin Garff, our highly trained ophthalmologists, have undergone extensive training and have a rich background of experience diagnosing and treating macular degeneration. Continue reading to learn more about macular degeneration and how it is treated.
What Is Macular Degeneration?
Macular degeneration, also known as Age Related Macular Degeneration, or AMD, is a condition that has been found in 25 million people in the United States that primarily impacts individuals over the age of 50, often of Caucasian descent. Macular degeneration occurs when the eye’s macula, a small spot within the retina responsible for central vision, begins to degrade and break down. Severe cases of macular degeneration can lead to significant visual impairment. By maintaining peripheral vision, macular degeneration does not lead to complete blindness, but those with severe cases are often considered to be legally blind. Patients are often unable to read and drive due to the severity of their condition. Macular degeneration, while not technically causing total blindness, will greatly impact the lives of people to a point where their central vision is completely distorted with only their peripheral vision remaining.
What Are the Symptoms of Macular Degeneration?
Symptoms for people who are experiencing macular degeneration generally consist of some form of vision loss or distortion that involves difficulty looking at or discerning straight lines. Additionally, people who are developing macular degeneration can experience a gradual or sudden change in their vision quality. Because macular degeneration impacts the macula, which controls the eye’s central vision, patients often begin to see blind spots and dark or blurred sections in the middle of their sight line.
What Are the Types of Macular Degeneration?
There are two different types of macular degeneration, known as “wet” and “dry.” The dry type of macular degeneration is the most common form of this vision-impairing condition. With dry macular degeneration, vision is gradually impaired due the tissue within the macula thinning as a person ages. The wet form of macular degeneration is particularly rare, but can often lead to vision loss at a much more rapid rate. Due to a buildup of blood vessels in the retina, wet macular degeneration can lead to fluids or blood leaking into the retina. Additionally, dry macular degeneration can sometimes lead to wet macular degeneration.
How Is Macular Degeneration Treated?
Although macular degeneration cannot be cured, patients who have been diagnosed with the wet form of macular degeneration at an early stage may be able to benefit from laser treatment, which can be effective at preventing further vision loss. Additionally, our doctors often recommend taking certain vitamins to help protect the patient’s eyesight (this may also be suggested as a preventative measure for individuals who are at risk of developing AMD). Depending on your individual case, Dr. Prestera or Dr. Garff can establish a treatment plan aimed at preserving your vision.
Contact Prestera Eye Medical Group
If you are interested in learning more about macular degeneration or believe you are in need of treatment, contact our practice today to schedule a consultation. Following your initial appointment, our team can develop a comprehensive treatment plan designed to meet your needs.