Macular Degeneration Can Rob You of Sight: Know the Signs

Age is the main risk factor for AMD, and people with a family history are at increased risk. Other risk factors include smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, excessive sun exposure, and a diet low in fruits and vegetables.

It is important to be aware of the symptoms of AMD.

Watch out for altered or wavy lines that should be straight. Close one eye at a time and look at the doorframe or the chessboard. If the lines look wavy or warped, this could be a sign of AMD. Or you can use the Amsler grid, which has black lines on a white piece of paper with a dot in the middle.

Notice blurry central vision that makes it hard to see a friend’s or loved one’s face clearly.

Pay attention to colors that appear washed out or dull. You should have your vision checked if you notice any decrease in color intensity or brightness.

“The sooner we see patients with symptoms of AMD or any retinal disease, the sooner we can determine the cause of the symptoms and track the problem or use revolutionary treatments to protect vision,” said ASRS President Dr. Philip Ferrone in a press release from the society.

“Advances in Imaging Technology and New Therapies, Including eye injections with anti-VEGF drugs, means, quite often, loss of vision and blindness is preventable when patients work with a retinal specialist, so seek help at the first sign or symptom,” Ferrone said.

More information

More information about AMD can be found at the US National Eye Institute.

SOURCE: American Society for the Retina, press release, February 1, 2022

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