Retinal Disorder

Eye and Retina


Retinal Disorders and Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Among the different retinal disorders, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one of the main causes of blindness. This is because the macula is central to seeing well and in detail. The macula is actually the center of the retina in your eyes and damage due to aging can create waves instead of straight lines.

With an eye exam, an ophthalmologist can use a ophthalmoscope, which is a hand tool, to see if there are any unusual changes in the characteristics of the retina.

The usual candidates for AMD are the aging, people with fair skin, high blood pressure, genetics, smoking, and lack of omega 3 fatty acids and nutrients from green vegetables.

This retinal disorder has two general types: the atrophic AMD and the neovascular AMD. It is also called the wet for neovascular and the dry for atrophic retinal disorder. Majority of people with this kind of retina problem have the dry type of AMD. The twist here is the of those who get the wet type of AMD, more often than not, they become partially or completely blind.

The difference between these two types are mainly in the fluids, or lack of fluids found in the retina. Also, dry AMD can progress very slowly and be painless. This is because the problem with dry AMD is that the tissues start to thin, and the blood cells disappear. With wet AMD, the blood cells start to grow abnormally beneath the macula, and this develops into a scar, blocking vision.

An ophthalmologist can go further with the eye exam and conduct 2 another tests known as the angiography, tomography, and a laser eye exam. These are techniques that enables the doctor to take a photograph of your retina, and will help him diagnose your condition more conclusively.

Unfortunately, with dry retinal disorders, the only treatment that can be advised and prescribed is really just a delaying tactic. Your doctor will probably ask you to take supplements if your condition is still in the beginning stages. These would include vitamins A and E, zinc, fresh, green vegetables, and fish.

Eye surgery may be possible, and in fact, there is the optional laser eye surgery which could help tremendously in improving your vision. For those with wet AMD, the laser eye surgery will target the abnormal blood cells in the hopes of eliminating them completely.

Other treatments other than eye surgery would be injections into the affected area to slow down the production of the abnormal blood cells or to prevent leaking. Glasses and other vision aids like a magnifying device will help people with vision problems. It is even possible to find computer software that can help a person work on a computer even if he has blurred vision. This is done by having the software communicate with him about what is being displayed on the monitor.