The Clearview Blog

The Dangers of Macular Degeneration

August 21, 2014

Clearview Vision Institute Toronto LASIK

As you get older, the health of your eyes should be at the forefront of your mind. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) poses a considerable threat to those over the age of 55 as one of the most common causes of vision loss and should not be ignored. Although most sufferers do not go totally blind, it still places your central vision at risk and can vastly affect your quality of life.

About

Macular degeneration occurs in the area of the eye responsible for central vision, known as the macula. The photoreceptors located within the macula provide you with detailed eyesight that allows for you to perform activities such as reading, driving, watching television, or using a computer. Due to the large concentration of photoreceptors in the macula, the brain can perceive the central area of your vision in high resolution. The damage caused by macular degeneration to this area of your eye will cause your vision to be distorted, greatly reducing your ability to perform activities which require clear and accurate eyesight.

The most common form of macular degeneration is known as dry AMD and involves the development of yellow deposits beneath the macula. These deposits, referred to as drusen, are indicative of the degradation of nerve tissue. The other form of this disease is known as wet AMD and is distinguished by the abnormal growth of blood vessels beneath the macula. These vessels can leak blood and fluid into the retina, destroying its cells and resulting in distorted, low quality vision.

Symptoms

It is difficult to detect macular degeneration until the disease has already affected both eyes, but its symptoms are distinct and should be cause for alarm. If you notice any of these changes to your vision, consult a medical professional as soon as possible.

–          The distortion of straight lines

–          Dark, blurry central vision

–          White outs

–          Changes to colour perception

Gradual blurriness to your vision can be indicative of the dry form of AMD while the wet form is usually signaled by the distortion of straight lines.

Have any more concerns about AMD? Don’t be afraid to share them with us!