If you’re wondering what the cause of macular degeneration is, the answer can be found in one word: age. Here at Chicago Vision Club, eye doctor in Lake View do a macular degeneration evaluation for our patients who are at least 40 years old. This disease is the most common cause of vision loss in people 60 and up. It doesn’t cause complete blindness, but it can result in significant vision loss. However, with early detection and treatment, you can live a normal, independent, productive life.
Risk factors for developing macular degeneration include smoking, obesity, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. Women contract it more than men do, as do those with whiter skin and lighter eyes. Our eye doctor in Lake View may recommend lifestyle adjustments that will lessen the chances of macular degeneration having an impact on you. The key indicator of this disease is the presence of drusen, a yellow deposit, that forms in the macula of your eye. The macula is the small part at the center of your retina. Over time, drusen tend to increase in both size and quantity, resulting in dim or distorted vision. This is especially problematic when reading, and blind spots can form in the center of your vision, with the possibility of losing your central vision entirely. About 90% of macular degeneration is called “dry.” On the other hand, wet macular degeneration has many of the same indications, along with straight lines looking wavy. If you experience any of the listed signs, you should be examined by our eye doctor in Lake View. Wet macular degeneration is treated with laser surgery, photodynamic therapy, or eye injections. There is no treatment for dry macular degeneration, but since it develops slowly, it is possible to manage it effectively. There is no cure for either wet or dry macular degeneration.
With a yearly eye exam, our eye doctor in Lake View will be able to detect macular degeneration early, providing more options for dealing with it. This disease need not stop you from enjoying life. Contact our office to arrange an exam.