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Macular degeneration is progressive eye disease that affects people over the age of 50. The condition affects the macula of the eye, a structure that contains millions of light-sensing cells that serve to sharpen central vision. The macula is located at the center of the retina at the back of the eye. When the macula becomes damaged, images cannot focus properly, and vision in the central field becomes blurred or darkened. Age is the most common risk factor for the development of macular degeneration. Family history and genetics are also key factors in its development. Macular degeneration is more common in Caucasians than in other racial groups. Our optometrist in Columbia can detect the subtle eye changes that indicate early stages of macular degeneration so that you can receive early treatment to preserve your vision.
Macular degeneration symptoms progress in their severity over time. In the early stages of AMD, you may experience no symptoms of vision changes at all. However, gradually, you will begin to notice slight changes. You may notice that straight lines appear wavy. There may be blurry areas or darkened areas in your field of vision, or you may see whitened areas. You may detect changes in your perception of colors. Any change in vision after the age of 40 should prompt you to make an appointment with an optometrist in Columbia to determine the cause. Early eye disease management can help to slow or prevent vision deterioration from AMD.
Macular degeneration treatment depends on which form of the disease you have. The dry form is the most commonly seen form of the disease, accounting for 85 to 90 percent of cases of AMD. It does not involve the leakage of serum or blood and tends to progress slowly. Eating a healthy diet, rich in antioxidants, controlling weight, managing high blood pressure and taking supplements of lutein and zeaxanthin can help to slow the progress of dry form AMD. The wet form of the disease is more serious, causing the excessive growth of blood vessels in the eyes. Treatments include injections of medication, laser surgery, and photodynamic therapy.
Patients that require eye disease treatment can rely on Dr. Andrew Stone and the friendly staff at Andrew Stone Optometry for professional, individualized care. We offer comprehensive vision care services, including vision exams, eyeglasses, contact lenses, hard-to-fit contacts, Ortho-K vision therapy, sports glasses, computer glasses and Lasik eye pre- and post-surgery consultation. We also detect and provide treatment for common eye diseases. Contact Andrew Stone Optometry today at 573-277-4052 for an appointment to test your eyes for macular degeneration and learn about treatments that can help to protect your vision.
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