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Macular Degeneration

Macular Degeneration Treatment from Our Optometrist in Northern San Antonio

Eye doctors diagnose a case of adult macular degeneration (AMD) in the U.S. every three minutes.  Regular vision exams at our Vision Source Castle Hills practice are important for affected individuals.  Our northern San Antonio optometrist can diagnose AMD in order for our patients to seek the earliest possible treatment.

Woman being tested for Macular Degeneration.

Overview of Age-related Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration has two types, dry and wet.  Most patients have dry AMD.  While the wet form progresses from the dry type, not all “dry” patients develop the more serious wet AMD. The risk of either type is higher for women than for men.

The macula is the center of the retina.  It contains cells responsible for seeing fine details and colors.  When they malfunction or cease functioning, AMD develops, causing a loss of central vision.  

It is impossible to restore lost central vision.  Because the brain compensates to a degree, most patients only notice a problem when their AMD is somewhat advanced.

Researchers have found no specific cause of AMD.  With dry AMD, cells lose the ability to get rid of the eye’s waste products.  Extra blood vessels form under the macula of a wet AMD patient and leak, causing rod and cone breakdown.

Dry AMD symptoms typically develop gradually and include:

  • Visual distortions such as bent instead of straight lines
  • Trouble recognizing faces
  • Less central vision
  • Growing blurriness of print
  • Reduction of color brightness or intensity
  • The necessity of brighter light for close work
  • Increased trouble adapting to low levels of light

Signs of wet AMD include:

  • Visual distortions such as straight lines that look bent
  • Quick symptom onset or worsening
  • Reduced central vision in either or both eyes
  • Overall vision haziness
  • A blind or blurry spot in the visual field
  • The reduced color intensity or brightness

AMD Treatment Options

There is no specific way to prevent AMD.  While dry AMD has no cure, making nutritional changes and taking supplements our optometrist recommends can slow vision loss.

With an early wet AMD diagnosis, laser surgery known as photocoagulation can seal leaking blood vessels to help minimize vision loss.  In photodynamic therapy, the eye doctor injects medication into the bloodstream, then activates it with laser eye treatment.  Injecting medication into the back of an eye sometimes also slows the development of new vessels.

Schedule an Exam with Our Northern San Antonio Optometrist

Early detection is particularly important for patients with aged-related macular degeneration.  Be sure to call our Vision Source Castle Hills practice today at (210) 344-1400 to schedule an exam with our northern San Antonio optometrist, Dr. Raul Trevino.  We operate a full-lab and full-optical eye care center to help maintain your optimal eye health and vision.