February is Macular Degeneration Awareness Month
Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is one of the leading causes of blindness among seniors, affecting approximately 3 million people in North America. By 2050, it is expected that the number will more than double. Throughout February, Cornerstone Optometry joins the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) in emphasizing AMD awareness and encouraging those who are most at risk to ensure the health of their eyes by getting a comprehensive eye exam.
AMD is a degenerative disease that damages the macula, a small area in the center of the retina. The retina is the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye that focuses images and relays information to the brain. The macula is a small area at the center of the retina that allows us to see fine details clearly and perform activities that rely on central vision like reading and driving. Over time, AMD through its effects on the macula can lead to permanent loss of central vision, limiting the ability to drive, read and recognize faces.
There are two forms AMD – wet and dry. While the dry form of AMD leads to gradual vision loss, the wet form progresses at a faster rate and is responsible for 90 percent of all AMD-related blindness. Recent advancements in treatment options have significantly decreased the incidence of blindness. However, it is critical to get diagnosed and begin treatment as soon as possible to protect vision.
Read more about AMD, its risk factors, and how it is treated by clicking the link to the AAO's page on: What is Macular Degeneration?