Macular Degeneration in Birmingham, AL

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What is macular degeneration?

Macular degeneration is a dangerous eye condition that affects the macula and typically develops in people around 50 years or older. The macular is the center portion of the retina, which is responsible for central vision, color perception, and small details. This structure has an impressive number of photoreceptor cells that help patients observe light. However, if the macula is damaged, wet or dry macular degeneration may form. Over time, this condition can lead to partial or total vision loss. Since this disease is progressive, it's important to get professional help as early as possible. At inVision Ophthalmology Birmingham in Birmingham, AL, our team takes special care to address macular degeneration and help manage the condition.

What Are the Symptoms of Macular Degeneration?

At inVision Ophthalmology Birmingham, our team emphasizes the importance of early detection and personalized management plans to slow the progression of macular degeneration and preserve vision as much as possible. Recognizing the symptoms early is crucial for managing this progressive eye condition effectively. Symptoms of macular degeneration include:

  • A blurry or blind spot in the center of your vision
  • Difficulty adjusting to low light levels
  • Haziness in central vision
  • Trouble recognizing faces

How Is Macular Degeneration Diagnosed?

Wet or dry macular degeneration is diagnosed through one or more tests. At inVision Ophthalmology Birmingham, we may conduct the following to diagnose the condition:

  • Visual acuity test: The classic eye chart test, which measures central vision.
  • Dilated eye exam: A test that widens the pupils, allowing your ophthalmologist to monitor the back of your eye for signs of macular degeneration.
  • Optical coherence tomography (OCT): Uses light to scan the eye and takes high-resolution images of the macula.
  • Fluorescein angiogram: Checks the blood vessels of the eyes using a fluorescent dye.

Treatments for Macular Degeneration

While macular degeneration does not currently have a cure, our team can still help you manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life. Depending on the type of macular degeneration you are suffering from (wet or dry), we may recommend any number of treatment options, including laser procedures, low-vision aids, or certain supplements. Each patient will receive a personalized treatment plan that is fully tailored to their eye health and needs. While your macular degeneration will not go away, the progression of the disease can be slowed or stopped, and your severe symptoms may be reduced.

Macular Degeneration FAQ

How many people have macular degeneration?
Approximately 11 million people in the U.S. have macular degeneration.

What are some of the symptoms of macular degeneration?
Some of the symptoms of macular degeneration include a blurry or blind spot in the center of your vision, difficulty adjusting to low light levels, haziness in your central vision, and difficulty recognizing faces.

How is dry macular degeneration different than wet macular degeneration?
Dry macular degeneration, which is the gradual breakdown of light-sensitive cells in the retina, accounts for 90% of cases. Wet macular degeneration is rarer (only 10% of cases) and is the more advanced form of macular degeneration. It is caused by blood or fluid leaking into the eyes from blood vessels with abnormalities. It accounts for 90% of cases of legal blindness.

Manage macular degeneration

At inVision Ophthalmology Birmingham, our skilled eye doctors are able to diagnose and treat a wide range of conditions. Although macular degeneration does not currently have a cure, our team has the tools and knowledge to help you live a more comfortable life. Contact our team in Birmingham, AL to learn more about the solutions we offer and how we aim to help you improve your eye health.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.