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Age-Related Macular Degeneration - Surgery

Wet AMD

Laser surgery doesn't cure wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD), but it can sometimes slow down or prevent further loss of central vision. Early surgery is vital to slowing down vision loss, which can be rapid.

But laser surgery is an option for less than one-fourth of people who have wet AMD.4 It is often hard to know in advance whether the surgery will do more harm than good.

Recommended Related to Macular Degeneration

Macular Degeneration: Preserving Eyesight

Q: My mother, 63, recently learned she has early signs of age-related macular degeneration. What can she do to preserve her eyesight? Would certain nutritional supplements help? A: Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) is the most common of all retinal disorders (damage to the eye's retina) and the leading cause of irreversible vision loss in older adults. Researchers have identified both hereditary and environmental factors. Although you can't change your genes, you can help preserve...

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By the time many people are diagnosed with wet AMD, it is often too late for surgery to provide much benefit. Even with treatment, many people will still go on to lose more of their central vision.

Dry AMD

Currently, surgery is not used to treat dry AMD. Laser surgery to remove deposits called drusen may slow vision loss in people with dry AMD, but experts think that it may increase the chance of developing wet AMD. Researchers are currently doing studies to see if this is an effective treatment.5

Surgery choices

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 12, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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