Macular Degeneration Treatment in Sinking Spring, PA
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Have you heard of macular degeneration? Do you know that the likelihood of having macular degeneration increases with age? This is why the condition is called age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The condition is common over age 60 and even more prevalent over age 75. The Eye Consultants of Pennsylvania team can help. If you’re in Sinking Spring, PA, and seeking macular degeneration treatment, we are close by in Wyomissing on Granite Point Drive.
What is AMD?
With AMD, the part of the eye called the macula is damaged over time. The macula is part of the retina and is responsible for central vision. Patients with AMD can see boundaries like a person’s hair, but the person’s face is blurred due to the loss of central vision. The condition makes tasks like reading, driving, and using digital devices quite difficult.
AMD becomes progressively worse over time. Unfortunately, there is no cure for AMD, but treatment options are available. Our board-certified doctors use these treatments to slow the disease’s progression and preserve the remaining vision. We aim to detect AMD as early as possible so we can treat it as early as possible. Eye exams are essential because AMD often has no symptoms in the early stages. People notice some central vision loss but often don’t give it much thought.
When you come to your visit, we will perform a comprehensive dilated eye exam, the only method of detecting AMD.
We offer several treatments, including several types of laser surgery, to slow the disease progression. These treatments are outpatient procedures aimed at limiting or preventing further blood vessel growth in the region around the macula. The blood vessels are abnormal and leak into the area of the eye, so by preventing new vessel growth, we limit the leakage and thereby reduce or even prevent further vision loss.
We sometimes have to repeat these procedures periodically. Leakage can reoccur in some cases and often happens within two years. Occasionally we must use alternative treatments when the blood vessel size is too large for laser surgery to be effective.
We also use anti-VEGF therapy, which involves injecting a chemical that reduces vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), a substance that the body naturally produces to generate new blood vessels. Unfortunately, VEGF is unhealthy in a person with AMD, so the anti-VEGF therapy limits or prevents new blood vessel growth behind the retina.
What can I do for my eye health?
You can do much to prevent AMD and protect your eyes. First, wear sunglasses to protect your eyes. Some research suggests a link between UV rays and cumulative eye damage that may increase the risk of developing AMD. Take nutrients that benefit eye health, like a multivitamin specifically formulated for the eye to include vitamins C, E, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
Annual eye exams are crucial, particularly if you have a family history of AMD (there is a genetic link) and particularly if you are over age 60. As people age, the loss of central vision, the main characteristic of AMD, becomes more severe, particularly over age 75. It is the leading cause of vision loss in this age group. If you suspect you have AMD or wonder whether you might, there is macular degeneration treatment in Sinking Spring, PA, at Eye Consultants of Pennsylvania Wyomissing office. We can help diagnose and manage the condition, so give us a call today.
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