Macular Degeneration

General Optometry located in Dearborn, MI
Older man on phone

Macular Degeneration services offered in Dearborn, MI

Age-related macular degeneration affects about 15 million Americans today and is a common cause of vision loss in adults. At Dearborn Eyecare in Dearborn, Michigan, eye health experts, led by Bashir Tarraf, OD, have the sophisticated equipment needed to diagnose macular degeneration in its earliest form. That allows you to start taking steps to preserve your vision now. Call the office or click on the online appointment maker to schedule your comprehensive eye exam today.

Macular Degeneration Q & A

What is age-related macular degeneration?

Age-related macular degeneration is a condition that causes central vision loss. It prevents you from seeing fine details straight ahead of you but doesn’t affect your side vision. 

There are two main types of macular degeneration, dry and wet. 

Dry macular degeneration
About 90% of cases are dry macular degeneration, the less severe form of the disease. It occurs when fatty deposits (drusen) accumulate in the macula (the middle part of the retina). Dry macular degeneration progresses slowly in most cases.

Wet macular degeneration
About 10-15% of people with dry macular degeneration experience disease progression (wet macular degeneration). With wet macular degeneration, abnormal blood vessels develop in the back of the eye. They rupture and leak blood into the macula, creating scars. Wet macular degeneration can cause rapid central vision loss.  

Macular degeneration mainly affects people over 50 and is a leading cause of vision loss in that age group. 

What are the symptoms of macular degeneration?

The early stages dry macular degeneration might not cause any symptoms, but over time you may experience: 

  • Straight lines that look bent
  • Increased difficulty seeing in low light conditions
  • Colors look less bright
  • Dark or blurry spot in your central vision
  • Words disappear when reading

With wet macular degeneration, symptoms are more severe and you may even lose central vision completely if you don’t seek treatment. Dearborn Eyecare can diagnose macular degeneration in its early form and help you prevent progression.

How is macular degeneration treated?

Unfortunately, there’s not a treatment for dry macular degeneration at this time. Two major studies showed that a certain blend of nutritional supplements may slow down disease progression. These include:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Lutein
  • Zeaxanthin
  • Zinc
  • Copper

Wet macular degeneration is treatable, but the earlier you get help, the better. 

If your dry macular degeneration progresses, your Dearborn Eyecare provider can refer you to a trusted ophthalmologist. The most common treatment option for wet macular degeneration is injectable anti-VEGF drugs that reduce abnormal blood vessels and deter leakage. You could need injections every month or so to prevent disease progression. 

Severe wet macular degeneration may require a different treatment, such as photodynamic therapy where your doctor injects light-sensing medication and shines laser light on the abnormal blood vessels to destroy them. 

Worried about macular degeneration? The best time to start screening is now. Call Dearborn Eyecare or click on the online booking tool today.