AGE-RELATED MACULAR DEGENERATION
What is ARMD?
Macular degeneration is the leading cause of central vision loss among older people. It results from changes to the macula, a portion of the retina responsible for clear, sharp vision located on the inside back wall of the eye. There are 2 types: Dry and Wet.
What are the causes of ARMD?
1. There is reduced blood circulation to the tissue of the macula which is thought to be a part of the natural aging process in some people.
2. Fluids from newly formed fragile blood vessels leak into the eye and cause vision loss.
What are the symptoms of ARMD?
1. A gradual(Dry) or acute(Wet) loss of ability to see objects clearly.
2. Distorted vision. Objects appear to be wrong size or shape or straight lines appear wavy or crooked.
3. A gradual loss of clear color vision.
4. A dark or empty area appearing in the center of vision.
5. How to use Amsler Grid below:
(Repeat for each eye)
Note: if you wear reading glasses, be sure to have them on whenever you take this test.
Look at the center dot on the grid with one eye at a time, covering the other eye with you hand.
Make sure you stay focused on the center dot.
As you continue to look at the center dot, check to see that all the surrounding lines are straight and all the squares are the same size.
If any area on the grid appears blurred, distorted, discoloured or in any way abnormal or different from your last test, contact your eye doctor immediately.
A person with distortion will see wavy or irregular lines in an area of the grid. A person with a blind spot or scotoma cannot see a portion of the grid.
Treatment of ARMD
•Inject anti-VEGF to prevent the growth of new blood vessels (Lucentis, Eylea are OHIP covered for over 65 years old) 90% have stable vision after treatment and 30% have improved vision
• If unfortunately your eyes become low vision or blind, don't lose your confidence. You can enjoy some CNIB services. Talking devices, magnifying glasses, binoculars and other vision aids can help you. Modern smartphones also have many functions to bring good news to people with low vision.