In macula degeneration there is damage to the yellow spots on the eyes.
There are two forms of macula degeneration; a "dry" and a "wet" form. The most common one is the dry form. In the dry form the ability to see degenerates slowly. Due to a lack of nutrients and oxygen in the retina, new – but of poor quality - blood vessels are produced. If these blood vessels leak blood or fluids, we talk about the wet form of macula degeneration. This type of degeneration deforms images that we see and subsequently, the ability to see degenerates quickly. Macula degeneration does not lead to total blindness because it is limited to the loss of central vision. The other parts of the retina allow us to see the environment, but in a hazy manner.
Visual acuity is reduced to a large extent. A person with this disorder loses the central visual field. There might be problems discerning colours and images might look deformed.
As yet there is no genuine treatment that can fight the cause of this illness. In early stages of ‘wet’ macula degeneration, patients are given injections of antiangiogenic drugs that cause regression of the abnormal blood vessels.
- Visual acuity decreases (seeing fewer details). For example: difficulty with threading a needle, reading, recognising people
- Seeing stains and smudges
- Seeing deformed images. For example: straight lines will appear to be bumpy and wavy
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