Macular Degeneration is a disease of the macula–a small area in the retina at the back of the eye. The macula allows you to see fine details clearly and do things such as read and drive. When the macula does not work properly, your central vision can be blurry and have areas that are dark or distorted.
Macular Degeneration is the most common cause of severe vision loss in people older than 50. Although macular degeneration reduces vision in the central part of the retina, it usually does not affect your side (peripheral) vision. Macular Degeneration alone does not cause total blindness. Even in more advanced cases, people usually retain peripheral vision.
Many older people develop macular degeneration as part of the body’s natural aging process. There are different kinds of macular problems, but the most common is age-related macular degeneration (AMD or ARMD).
Dry Macular Degeneration
Eighty to ninety percent of people with AMD have the “dry” form. Vision loss is usually gradual and may have difficulty adjusting to changes in light.
Wet Macular Degeneration
Ten to twenty percent of people with AMD have the “wet” form. Many of these people develop significant vision loss. New abnormal blood vessels form underneath the retina and they leak fluid or blood. Vision loss may be rapid and severe.
Many people do not realize that they have a macular problem until blurred vision becomes obvious. Dr. Frisch can detect early stages of AMD during your medical eye examination.