Macular Degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in the United States

Causes

In Macular Degeneration, the macula (i.e., the part of the retina responsible for clear central vision) undergoes vascular changes that may cause loss of central vision.

This condition is usually permanent and may progress if it goes undetected and untreated.

Symptoms

The symptoms of Macular Degeneration include:

  • gradual loss of clear central, or "straight-ahead" vision
  • distorted or wavy vision
  • gradual loss of color vision
  • a dark or empty area (i.e., "blind spot") in the center  of your field of vision

Diagnosis and Treatment

The more common form of Macular Degeneration is the dry form. Unfortunately, there is no known treatment for this form. A less common form of Macular Degeneration is the wet form, in which fluid leaks from blood vessels surrounding the macula. If detected early, this form may be treatable with certain laser procedures.

Although central vision loss cannot be restored, special optical devices can be prescribed to help maximize the effectiveness of remaining vision. In addition, certain vitamin and mineral supplements may help prevent or slow the progression of Macular Degeneration.