Macular degeneration is a complex disease in which the macular region of the retina, the area responsible for out very best vision, becomes damaged. Underneath the entire retina is a pigment layer that helps keep the overlying retina healthy. In macular degeneration, this pigment layer no longer functions well or even wears away causing damage to the overlying retina.
Most people talk about two forms of macular degeneration, and although the terms may cause more confusion than clarification, they are "wet" and "dry." In the dry form, the pigment changes cause the damage. Often there are deposits called "drusen" that are basically material that the pigment cells could not remove.
In the "wet" form, abnormal blood vessels grow. These blood vessels can leak fluid and bleed, hence the term "wet", and create scar tissue. While the wet form represents only about 20% of all cases of macular degeneration, it accounts for 80% of severe vision loss.
Certain forms of the "wet" macular degeneration may benefit from direct laser, a type of medication/laser treatment called Visudyne Photodynamic Therapy, or special medications such as Avastin or Lucentis.
For more information or to schedule an appointment please contact us at 315 464-5252.