Age-related Macular Disease is the leading cause of severe vision loss in people over 60. It occurs when the small central portion of the retina, known as the macula, deteriorates. The retina is the light sensing nerve tissue at the back of the eye. Because the disease develops as a person ages, it is often referred to as the age-related macular degenerating (AMD). Although AMD can be a significant visual disability, it is almost never completely blinding.
There are two forms: dry form, and wet form. The dry form of macular degeneration is characterized by yellow deposits, called drusen in the macula. A few drusen may not cause change in vision, as they grow and increase in size and number it may lead to diming or distortion of vision most noticeable when reading. In more advanced stages, there is also a thinning of the light-sensitive layer of cells in the macula leading to atrophy, or tissue death. Patients may have blind spots in the center of their vision. In advanced stages patients lose their central vision.
Wet form: is characterized by the growth of abnormal blood vessels from the chorid underneath the macula. This is called choridal neovascularization. These blood vessels leak blood and fluid into the retina, causing distortion of vision. The dry form of macular can also lead to the wet form. Only about 10% of patients with macular degeneration develop the wet form, they make up the majority who experience serious vision loss from the disease.
Macular degeneration can be passed from parent to child, smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, and being light skinned, female and having light eye color are also risks for macular degeneration (webmd copy write 2005-2014, LLC)
Glaucoma is an eye disease characterized by dysfunction of the ocular drainage system. The exact cause of glaucoma is unknown; fluid inside the eye builds up because of the diminished draining rate. As the internal pressure of the eye increases without...