Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in the United States and affects the lives of nearly 10 million people. The experienced optometrists at Bloomberg Eyecare offer comprehensive eye exams to diagnose macular degeneration at their offices in Warren, Boardman, and Austintown, Ohio. If you have a family history of macular degeneration or notice a loss of your central vision, don’t delay an appointment at Bloomberg Eyecare. Schedule an appointment online or by calling the office nearest you.
Macular degeneration describes a deterioration of the central part (macula) of your retina, the light-sensitive tissue at the back of your eye that records images of what you see. The macula provides you with your central vision, so you can recognize faces, read a book, and see the finer details of objects.
Age-related changes in your eyes are the most common cause of macular degeneration. As you get older, parts of your macula become thinner. This is known as dry macular degeneration.
Wet macular degeneration is a less common but more serious condition that can occur after you develop dry macular degeneration. This disease occurs when new blood vessels grow abnormally under your retina and leak blood or other fluids that damage the macula. Vision loss with wet macular degeneration is much faster than with dry macular degeneration.
While anyone can develop blurry vision or suffer vision loss due to macular degeneration as they get older, your risk for developing the disease at an early age may increase due to:
If you have any of these risk factors, Bloomberg Eyecare provides comprehensive eye exams to identify degenerative damage in the earliest stages.
A Bloomberg Eyecare optometrist performs screenings to evaluate the accuracy of your vision. They may ask you to read words or look at pictures to determine if you have any blank spots in your vision.
Your optometrist can also look through a special lens to identify damage in your retina and macula to confirm or rule out macular degeneration.
Other diagnostic tests available include:
Fundoscopy is a lighted, magnified exam of your retina and optic nerve. During this test, your optometrist may also take images (fundus photography).
The Amsler grid is a graph test to confirm the diagnosis of macular degeneration.
If you have dry macular degeneration, there’s no medication currently available to treat it. However, your Bloomberg Eyecare optometrist may recommend nutritional supplements to slow the progression of your disease. These supplements include:
You can also eat healthy foods that support eye function, such as fresh, leafy greens, yellow fruits, and fish.
If you have the wet form of macular degeneration, you may be a candidate for anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) injections that reduce the growth of abnormal blood vessels in your retina. Your Bloomberg Eyecare optometrist may also refer you to a specialist for a laser treatment to destroy blood vessels and prevent fluid leaks.
If you have a family history of macular degeneration or develop changes in your vision, schedule a diagnostic evaluation by calling the Bloomberg Eyecare office nearest you or by requesting an appointment online today.