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Age-Related Macular Degeneration Treatment

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Low vision aids. Devices that have special lenses or electronic systems that produce enlarged images of nearby objects. They help people who have vision loss from macular degeneration make the most of their remaining vision.

Researchers are studying new age-related macular degeneration treatments. The following treatments are considered experimental.

  • Submacular surgery. Surgery to remove the abnormal blood vessels or blood.
  • Retinal translocation. A surgical procedure used to destroy abnormal blood vessels that are located directly under the center of the macula, where a laser beam cannot be placed safely. In the procedure, the macular center is rotated away from the abnormal blood vessels to a healthy area of the retina, thus preventing the formation of scar tissue and further damage to the retina. Once moved away from the abnormal blood vessels, a laser is used to treat the abnormal blood vessels.

 

Next Steps for Macular Degeneration

Because some people with the dry form of age-related macular degeneration may develop the wet form, those with the dry form should monitor their vision daily and notify their ophthalmologist of any changes in their vision.

If you have the wet form of macular degeneration, even if it's been treated, you should test your vision to see if any blind spots grow bigger or if any new blind spots appear. New blood vessels can emerge months or years after you have had successful injections or laser treatment.

If only one eye is affected, your ophthalmologist will perform regular eye exams on your other eye to discover any sign of new problems.

What Is the Outlook for People With Age-Related Macular Degeneration?

People rarely lose all of their vision from age-related macular degeneration. They may have poor central vision, but they are still able to perform many normal daily activities.

The wet form of macular degeneration is a leading cause of irreversible legal blindness. When both eyes are affected, you may lose significant quality of life.

The dry form of age-related macular degeneration is much more common and tends to progress more slowly, allowing you to keep most of your vision.

Unfortunately, even after macular degeneration treatment, the condition can recur. Because of this, individuals with macular degeneration must test their own vision regularly and follow the recommendations of their ophthalmologist. Proper and timely treatment, however, cannot only slow the rate of vision loss but often improve vision.

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