Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one of the leading causes of vision loss and blindness in people over the age of 50. The retinal damage that occurs due to macular degeneration results in vision loss in the center of the visual field, which can cause difficulty in reading and/or recognizing faces. Typically patients retain enough peripheral vision to engage in other daily activities.
There are two forms of AMD, referred to as “dry” and “wet” forms of the condition. The dry type accounts for about 90% of all macular degeneration cases and is considered to be less severe than the wet form. If left untreated, both types of macular degeneration will become more severe as they progress. The condition is not painful, thus many patients do not seek treatment when they first notice symptoms of vision loss. Symptoms that may suggest macular degeneration include the need for brighter light when reading, difficulty recognizing faces, increased blurriness of words when reading, difficulty adapting to low light levels, haziness in central vision, and a blind spot or blurriness at the center of the field of vision.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is critical that you see one of our qualified eye doctors as soon as possible. It is also important to attend routine eye exams, in which our doctor will examine you for macular degeneration and other age-related vision problems.