Updated: Mar 2, 2019
AMD (Age-related Macular Degeneration) is the leading cause of vision loss in people over 50. As a fellowship-trained retinal specialist, I treat AMD every day. It’s a frightening disease, but there are amazing treatments available today. AMD is a disease which damages the macula, the center-back portion of the eye. At first, it sneaks up on people because there is no pain and no visual symptoms. In advanced cases, people suddenly lose vision and go blind from bleeding inside the eye. This is called wet AMD. It is truly scary. Medication (called Anti-VEGF) prevents vision loss from wet AMD and, in many cases, improves vision. We only started using this revolutionary class of medication for AMD in 2005. It was the first time I could give my AMD patients any hope of seeing better. In the exam room, after numbing the eye, I inject the Anti-VEGF medication directly into the eye. It doesn’t hurt. I have some patients who were completely blind and this medication brought their vision back. It really works!
But there is more work to be done. Unfortunately, Anti-VEGF injections do not help everyone. There are newer treatments in the pipeline, but more research is needed.
In the meantime, retinal specialists such as myself will continue to fight for our patients’ vision every single day. Have you seen your eye doctor lately?
(this information is not medical advice. Please consult your doctor)