Macular degeneration is an eye disease that can affect eyesight. One of the main symptoms is the loss of central vision. Having blurry or wavy areas in central vision is often a later symptom of the condition.
Macular degeneration, or age-related macular degeneration (AMD), is an eye disease that can cause damage to the macula in the retina. The macula is responsible for sharp, clear central vision. When a person has AMD, they may experience blurring or complete blind spots in their central vision.
There are two types of AMD: dry and wet. Dry AMD is when the macula gets thinner over time. It typically progresses slowly over several years. There is currently no treatment for the later stages of dry AMD.
Wet AMD occurs when atypical blood vessels grow at the back of the eye and cause damage to the macula. Wet AMD typically progresses more quickly. However, there are treatment options available.
In this article, we will discuss the impact of macular degeneration on central vision.
The macula is a part of the eye located inside the retina. It is responsible for sharp, clear central vision. AMD occurs when the macula becomes thinner over time or suffers damage from atypical blood cells that grow behind the eye.
This damage can cause a person to lose their central vision, which can make it difficult to see fine details clearly. While AMD affects central vision, a person’s peripheral, or side, vision will typically remain unaffected.
When a person with AMD loses their central vision, they may find it difficult to see the fine details of things that are directly in front of them. A person may also find it difficult to watch television, drive, cook, see faces, or read.
A person with central vision loss due to AMD may experience the following:
- objects appearing to be smaller than they are
- colors appearing faded and dull
- straight lines appearing wavy or jagged
- objects appearing distorted
- blurring or blind spots
AMD does not affect peripheral or side vision. Therefore, a person with AMD who has lost their central vision will still be able to use their side vision to complete everyday tasks. A rehabilitation specialist can help teach a person how to use their peripheral vision most effectively.
The rate of eyesight deterioration differs depending on which form of AMD a person has. Dry AMD is
Wet AMD is less common and occurs when atypical blood vessels begin to grow at the back of the eye, causing damage to the macula. Wet AMD typically develops more quickly and can develop very suddenly.
There are treatment options available for wet AMD, which may slow the rate of central vision deterioration. If a person does not receive treatment for wet AMD, central vision loss can occur in a period of weeks or months.
Some treatment options can include anti-VEGF medications, which a doctor injects directly into the eye. Another treatment option is laser surgery, such as photodynamic therapy (PDT), which involves both injections and a laser to seal leaky blood vessels.
Studies suggest that if a person with AMD takes certain vitamins and minerals each day, they may be able to slow the progression of the disease.
A person may choose to consume these by including plenty of dark green, leafy vegetables in their diet or by taking dietary supplements. Specialty supplements, known as
A person with AMD may experience central vision loss in one or both eyes. It may be challenging for a person to adjust to their new level of vision. However, there are several ways a person can manage their condition. Some of these
- using brighter lighting at home or work
- reducing the glare from lightbulbs or wearing anti-glare sunglasses
- using vision aids such as magnifying glasses or a magnifying lens
Read on to learn more about managing AMD.
Macular degeneration, or age-related macular degeneration (AMD), is an eye disease that can lead to a blurring of or complete loss of central vision. This can make it harder to recognize faces, read, drive, or perform daily tasks.
It is not currently possible to correct central vision loss from AMD. However, there are several treatments that may help prevent symptoms from getting worse.
A person can adjust certain things in their home, such as lighting, to help them manage AMD and central vision loss. There are also several vision aids a person can use, such as anti-glare sunglasses and a magnifying lens. These can help an individual with vision loss remain independent and do things they enjoy.