Macular Degeneration (previously known as Age Related Macular Degeneration)
Dry Macular Degeneration
This is the most common form of MD accounting for 85% of cases, where yellow fatty deposits called drusen develop at the macula and develops slowly and no medical treatment options are available at present however anti-oxidant supplements have been shown to slow/prevent progression of MD and associated vision loss.
Wet Macular Degeneration
This type of MD accounts for 15% of cases and is also known as neovascular MD as it is caused by the collection of drusen and the growth of new abnormal leaky blood vessels at the macula which causes fluid leakage and scarring. A particular protein called vascular endothelial growth factor veg F-A is responsible for the growth of these abnormal vessels. Wet MD can cause a more rapid and severe loss of vision.
Until now the treatment for wet AMD only slowed down vision loss however now there are new treatments which can stop the vision from getting worse and in some cases even improve vision.
This treatment is given in the form of intra-vitreal injections of anti vegF-A in to the eyeball under local anaesthetic. This treatment is very successful especially if the loss of vision has been recent. Laser treatment in Wet AMD is not a cure but merely to treat/prevent new vessel formation at the macula.
Every patient is different and treatment is ongoing requiring frequent monitoring in order to maintain vision. Early detection is vital for best treatment results and your optician/optometrist is the best person to check your eyes.