Wet and Dry Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is one of the leading causes of blindness in the world today. There are basically two types: wet and dry. Dry macular degeneration composes about 90% of the cases of macular degeneration. It doesn’t involve blood or serum leakage, but vision loss can still occur. Those who have dry macular degeneration can have good central vision but still have vision problems, such as limited vision at night or in places of low light.

            In this type of macular degeneration, the destruction of the retina occurs because of small yellow deposits, called drusen, beneath the macula. It leads to the macula thinning and drying out, thus making the macula unable to do its job. The amount of vision loss is proportional to the location and amount of retinal thinning due to the drusen. Almost everyone over 50 has one small druse in one or both eyes. Those whose eyes have large drusen are the only ones at risk for macular degeneration. Those who have this disease may have blurry central vision because parts of the macula are dying. This leaves blank spots in one’s vision. Straight lines may appear to be wavy.

            Wet macular degeneration, on the other hand, progresses faster than the dry. This type makes up about 10% of the cases of macular degeneration. This type is caused when abnormal blood vessels grow underneath the retina and the macula. These vessels then bleed and leak fluid, creating a bulge in the macula or lifting it up from its flat position. This destroys the central vision. When this happens, rapid and severe vision loss can occur. People with this disease might see dark spots in the center of their vision because of the blood/fluid buildup under the macula. Straight lines may appear wavy because the macula has lost its smoothness.

            Dry macular degeneration cannot be cured at this time. Ways to prevent the progression of dry macular degeneration involve avoiding smoking, protecting your eyes from the sun, exercising, maintaining a normal blood pressure and healthy cholesterol level, eating a diet of leafy, green veggies and fish, and taking nutritional supplements. Methods of treating wet macular degeneration include the previous recommendations along with either medication injections, laser photocoagulation, or photodynamic therapy.

            As mentioned above, vision supplements may be effective in the management of both wet and dry macular degeneration. There is much confusion regarding supplements due to the wide variety of products available. MedOp has simplified this dilemma by creating MaxiVision Whole Body Formula. This product is an excellent multivitamin and contains the proper amounts of all the eye vitamins and nutrients used to treat and protect against macular degeneration. Studies also show that its ingredients may improve clarity, increase contrast sensitivity, and reduce light glare.