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Macular Degeneration

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What is macular degeneration?

Macular degeneration is also commonly referred to as age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) because it is a disease that occurs mostly in people over the age of fifty, however, it can also occur in younger people. The macula is a tiny area at the center of the retina. The retina is in the back of the eye and it is the part of the eye that the images we see get focused on. The macula is the part of the retina that is responsible for helping us to see fine detail. Macular degeneration is an eye disease that affects the "macula" or the part of the eye that is responsible for fine central vision, leaving the peripheral or side vision clear.

There are two types of macular degeneration: dry and wet. Dry macular degeneration is more common. A person with this problem may notice wavy lines or spots in the center of their vision, or colors may looked faded and washed out. Wet macular degeneration is less common but more serious. A person with wet macular degeneration often has a quick loss of vision. They may notice blank or dark spots in the center of their vision.

What causes wet and dry macular degeneration?

Dry macular degeneration is where macular cells do not function properly. In wet macular degeneration, leaking blood vessels cause swelling and scarring of the macula.

How is macular degeneration corrected?

Unfortunatley, there is no way to restore vision lost from dry macular degeneration. However, it should be carefully monitored because it can turn into the more serious wet macular degeneration. If wet macular degeneration occurs and is caught early, laser treatment may help slow further vision loss.

Does the Infirmary have a Support Group for Macular Degeneration?

Yes. Learn how you can join the Macular Degeneration Support Group at NYEE.

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