The macula is a small area in the retina at the back of the eye that allows you to see fine details clearly and perform activities such as reading and driving. Macular degeneration is the deterioration or breakdown of the macula. It reduces vision in the central part of the retina; however, it does not affect the eye’s side or peripheral vision.
Most people first develop the dry form of AMD which is caused by the formation of yellow drusen deposits under the macula (the central part of your retina). These deposits cause your macula to gradually dry out and weaken. As the macula deteriorates, you may experience:
- Blurred/distorted vision
- Dark areas in central vision
- Straight lines appearing wavy
Patients with wet macular degeneration often require consultation with a retina specialist. Wet AMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels form under your retina. These delicate structures can leak blood or fluid into the retina causing rapid vision damage. There are new treatments including Avastin & Lucentis which have revolutionized care.