Macular degeneration is a serious eye condition. It is caused when the macula thins, which causes reduced central vision. At Lavenburg Medical Group in Elkton, MD, our professionals provide treatment options to slow the progression of the disease and will help you see better when vision loss has occurred. We also serve Newark and Wilmington, DE.
Who Is at Risk for Macular Degeneration?
Although anyone can develop this condition, certain factors can increase your risk of developing it, including:
- Age: This condition is most common in people over 60.
- Family history: Studies have shown that macular degeneration can run in families.
- Race: This condition is most common in Caucasians.
- Cardiovascular disease: If you have a condition that affects your heart or blood vessels, your risk increases.
- Smoking: Being a smoker can increase your risk.
- Obesity: Studies have shown that being overweight or obese can cause early symptoms, and they will be worse.
What Are the Symptoms of Macular Degeneration?
In the early stages, macular degeneration shows no symptoms. As the condition progresses, these symptoms are common.
- Seeing straight lines as bent lines
- Needing brighter lights for reading and close-up work
- Trouble adapting to dim rooms
- Blurriness of printed words
- Decreased intensity of colors
- Reduced central vision in one or both eyes
- Trouble recognizing faces
- A blurry or blind spot in your central field of vision
How Is Macular Degeneration Diagnosed?
This condition is diagnosed at a routine eye exam. Our eye doctor will dilate your eyes to examine the back of your eye. If there are yellow deposits, called drusen, we will perform further tests to confirm the diagnosis.
- Amsler grid: Our optometrist will show you a graph. If the straight lines appear bent, you may have macular degeneration.
- Fluorescein angiography: This test can detect retinal changes that are common with macular degeneration.
- Indocyanine green angiography: This test can identify the specific type of macular degeneration you have.
- Optical coherence tomography: This test can identify areas of the retina that are thinning, which signifies macular degeneration.
How Is Macular Degeneration Treated?
There is no cure for macular degeneration. However, there are treatment options that can slow the progression of the disease.
There are supplements that have proven effective in slowing the progression of the disease and preserving your vision for longer. Our ophthalmology expert will also suggest lifestyle changes, such as quitting smoking and eating a healthy, low-calorie diet to prevent becoming overweight or obese.
In more severe cases, there are eye injections that help new blood vessels grow in the eye and slow the progression of the disease. Our ophthalmology expert may also suggest laser treatment or medications.
Schedule an Appointment with Our Optometrist for Macular Degeneration Treatment
Macular degeneration is a serious condition that should not be left untreated. This is why it is vital to get annual eye exams with our optometrist, so the condition can be caught early. At Lavenburg Medical Group in Elkton, MD, our experts will diagnose your condition and provide treatment options. We also serve patients in Wilmington and Newark, DE. Our goal is to keep your eye health and vision at their best. Call us today to schedule an appointment.