SoCal Eye – Age Related Macular Degeneration Specialist in Long Beach.
Macular degeneration—simply described as blurred vision—is a leading cause of vision loss among people 50 and older, affecting more than 10 million Americans. If you think you may be among them, be glad to know that macular degeneration, or AMD, can be easily detected. There are even ways to reduce or slow its onset but early detection and treatment are critical. The experienced Eye Physicians at SoCal Eye have been working with Age Related Macular Degeneration in Long Beach, Huntington Beach and Garden Grove since 1964. Treatment starts with a Comprehensive Eye Exam. Schedule an Appointment today at LAKEWOOD (562) 531-2020 | LOS ALAMITOS (562) 598-7728 or send us an Online Consultation Request
What is Aged Related Macular Degeneration?
Distortion on this grid may indicate a problem with your macula. However, seeing a normal grid does not preclude
AMD. Daily usage of an Amsler grid is often the earliest and easiest way for patients to monitor and detect wet AMD. Early detection of AMD is key to getting the best results from treatment.
Using the Amsler Grid to test your vision: Put on reading glasses, cover one eye, position yourself about 18 inches from the grid and stare at the dot in the center. You should be able to see the dot, the lines should be straight, and the squares should be square. If they are not, and the changes are new, please make an appointment with us or your eye care professional to be seen as soon as possible; do not wait more than a couple of days.
Macular Degeneration – Treatment:
How is Wet AMD treated?
At SoCal Eye, we have doctors who are fellowship trained in the treatment of diseases of the retina, including macular degeneration. We have all the latest technologies and techniques at our disposal to allow optimal results. Wet AMD can be treated with laser surgery, photodynamic therapy, and injections into the eye. None of these treatments is a cure for wet AMD. The disease and loss of vision may progress despite treatment.
Laser surgery – This procedure uses a laser to destroy the fragile, leaky blood vessels. A high energy beam of light is aimed directly onto the new blood vessels and destroys them, preventing further loss of vision. However, laser treatment may also destroy some surrounding healthy tissue and some vision. Only a small percentage of people with wet AMD can be treated with laser surgery. Laser surgery is performed in the office.
Photodynamic therapy – A drug called verteporfin is injected into your arm. It travels throughout the body, including the new blood vessels in your eye. The drug tends to “stick” to the surface of new blood vessels. Next, a light is shined into your eye for 90 seconds. The light activates the drug. The activated drug destroys the new blood vessels and leads to a slower rate of vision decline. Unlike laser surgery, this drug does not destroy surrounding healthy tissue. Because the drug is activated by light, you must avoid exposing your skin or eyes to direct sunlight or bright indoor light for five days after treatment. Photodynamic therapy is relatively painless. It takes 20 minutes and can be performed in our office. Photodynamic therapy slows the rate of vision loss. It does not stop vision loss or restore vision in eyes already damaged by advanced AMD. Treatment results often are temporary. You may need to be treated again.
Injections – Wet AMD can now be treated with new drugs that are injected into the eye (anti-VEGF therapy). Abnormally high levels of a specific growth factor occurs in eyes with wet AMD and promotes the growth of abnormal new blood vessels. These drugs block the effects of the growth factor. Multiple injections are often needed, usually once a month. The eye is numbed before each injection, and most patients report only mild pressure or discomfort. This drug treatment can help slow down vision loss from AMD and, in some cases, improve sight.
What can be done if AMD becomes advanced?
Once dry AMD reaches the advanced stage, no form of treatment can return what has been lost. However, treatment can delay and possibly prevent intermediate AMD from progressing to the advanced stage, in which vision loss occurs.
The National Eye Institute found that taking a specific high-dose formulation of antioxidants and zinc significantly reduces the risk of advanced AMD and its associated vision loss. Slowing AMD’s progression from the intermediate stage to the advanced stage will save the vision of many people.
SoCal Eye Consultation:
The key to success with Treatment for Aged Related Macular Degeneration is Early Detection. If it can be caught early through a Comprehensive Eye Exam, the progression of the disease can be slowed dramatically. SoCal Eye doctors are the Macular Degeneration Specialists in Long Beach. Schedule an Appointment today at LAKEWOOD(562) 531-2020 | LOS ALAMITOS(562) 598-7728 or send us an Online Consultation Request
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Lakewood(562) 531-2020 | Los Alamitos(562) 598-7728