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Macular degeneration

  • AMD is a common eye condition and a leading cause of vision loss among people age 50 and older. It involves damage to the macula, a small spot near the center of the retina that is needed for sharp, central vision.
  1. Dry AMD (Atrophic):
    • More common and less severe.
    • Characterized by thinning of the macula and formation of drusen (tiny yellowish deposits).
  2. Wet AMD (Neovascular or Exudative):
    • Less common but more severe.
    • Characterized by the growth of abnormal blood vessels under the retina, leading to leakage of fluid or blood.
  • Prevalence increases with age.
  • More common in Caucasians and females.
Risk Factors:
  • Age (>50 years).
  • Family history of AMD.
  • Smoking.
  • Hypertension, cardiovascular disease.
  • Obesity and diet lacking in fruits and vegetables.
  • The exact cause is unknown.
  • In dry AMD, cellular debris accumulates between the retina and the choroid, and the retina can become detached.
  • In wet AMD, abnormal blood vessel growth is stimulated by vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF).
Clinical Features:
  • Gradual loss of central vision.
  • Blurred or fuzzy vision.
  • Difficulty in reading fine print or recognizing faces.
  • Straight lines appear wavy (wet AMD).
  • No pain or redness of the eyes.
  • Comprehensive eye examination.
  • Visual acuity test.
  • Dilated fundus examination.
  • Optical coherence tomography (OCT) to visualize the retina.
  • Fluorescein angiography for wet AMD.
  • No cure for dry AMD, but progression can be slowed down with dietary supplements (AREDS2 formula).
  • Wet AMD can be treated with anti-VEGF injections, laser therapy, and photodynamic therapy.
  • Regular eye exams.
  • Smoking cessation.
  • Maintaining a healthy diet rich in green, leafy vegetables and fish.
  • Controlling other medical conditions like hypertension and obesity.

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