Macular degeneration affects more than 10 million people in the United States and is the leading cause of vision loss. When it comes to best handling this progressive disease, early intervention is key. At Eye Associates of Orange County in Mission Viejo, California, Dr. Omar Krad has considerable expertise in diagnosing and treating macular degeneration, helping his patients preserve their vision. For more information, call or use the online scheduling tool to set up an appointment.
Macular degeneration is a progressive disease that’s caused by the deterioration of the cells in your macula, which is responsible for your central vision. When the cells in this highly sensitive area of your retina break down, the information that’s sent through your optic nerve to your brain to create an image isn’t sufficient.
There are two types of macular degeneration: wet and dry. Most people (85-90%) have dry macular degeneration, which is the less severe form of the condition. Dry macular degeneration is caused by a breakdown of the macula tissue and wet macular degeneration — which always starts as the dry version — occurs when abnormal blood vessels begin to leak.
There’s no known cause of macular degeneration, but there are certain factors that put you more at risk, such as:
Since there’s no known cause of the disease, there’s no single cure, but there’s much that Dr. Krad can do to slow the progression of macular degeneration.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is typically divided into three categories:
During this stage, your vision is still intact, but Dr. Krad can spot the early signs of the disease during an eye exam, namely the yellow deposits in your retina called drusen.
During this stage, you may start to notice problems in your central vision, which typically appear as dark spots or blurriness. These problems are caused by larger drusen, which begin to interfere with your vision.
When AMD progresses, your vision loss becomes more pronounced in this later stage as you slowly lose the ability to see things in front of you.
Dr. Krad is able to identify the early warning signs of macular degeneration during your regular eye exams. These early signs come in the form of drusen. If Dr. Krad finds medium-to-large drusen in your eyes, he recommends that you take steps to slow the progression of AMD through vitamin supplements and lifestyle changes.
The earlier you catch macular degeneration, the more options you have to slow the disease. Call Eye Associates of Orange County to get started, or use the online booking tool to schedule an appointment.