Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the result of damage to the light-sensitive cells in the central part of the retina which are responsible for fine, detailed vision called the macula. It is non-reversible and is the most common cause of severe, permanent visual loss in the UK. There are two types of macular degeneration – ‘dry’ and ‘wet’ (hyperlink to dry AMD section).
Wet macular degeneration can progress very rapidly due to the growth of abnormal blood vessels under the macula. These leak fluid or bleed, causing damage to the sensitive retinal cells which can lead to sight loss. Symptoms can occur in one or both eyes and onset can be rapid (in a matter of weeks) if it is wet AMD. If in one eye only, it may go unnoticed due to compensation from the other eye.
What are the Symptoms?
What are the Causes?
Age-related macular degeneration is multifactorial, and the exact cause is not fully understood. Age appears to be the biggest risk factor with diagnosis usually after the age of 65yrs. It affects women more frequently than men and a number of genes have been discovered but it is not always inherited. Significant risk factors include: smoking obesity, diet and UV exposure.
What is the Diagnosis?
Treatments are available for wet macular degeneration – but while effective at preventing further damage, they can’t ‘undo’ damage that’s already occurred, so starting treatment as early as possible can make a big difference.
Several ‘Anti-VEGF’ injections are available that when injected into the back chamber of the eye are effective at halting the progress of wet AMD. They work by inhibiting the growth and leakage / bleeding of new and abnormal blood vessels in / under the retina.
Choosing the right vision correction clinic for your surgery is paramount. This is a life changing procedure after all, and you need to have complete trust in your surgeon and care team of professionals.
More information about Anti-VEGF Intravitreal Injections
An injection of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) into the posterior chamber or vitreous cavity of the eye aims to reduce macular oedema, or abnormal blood vessel growth inside the eye.View Anti-VEGF Intravitreal Injections