I have myelodysplastic syndrome and I would like to know if there are any clinical studies concerning blood disorders and a link to age-related macular degeneration. Thank you. [ 09/24/12 ]
No clinical studies have been published linking wet or dry age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) to myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). The exact cause of ARMD is not known, but it is thought to be related to environmental toxins, such as cigarette smoke, and genetic predispositions. One such predisposition is a certain mutation in part of the immune system called the complement cascade. Some patients with MDS also have abnormalities in the complement subpart of the immune system, but this is not thought to be a common cause of both diseases.
My 86-year-old mother has wet age-related macular degeneration and has been receiving monthly injections of Lucentis for 18 months. Her vision has not improved but has remained stable. A few weeks ago, her retina specialist switched her to Eylea to reduce the frequency of the injections. Then, after one week, her vision became blurry and her acuity changed from 20/80 to 20/200! Her doctor took retinal pictures and did several other tests but could not find any reason for the changes. Do you think her blurred vision is permanent and do you think she should go back to Lucentis? Thanks for your time. [ 09/24/12 ]
Though research is ongoing, no one knows the definitive effects of switching patients with wet age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) from one therapy, such as Lucentis, to another therapy, such as Eylea. The trials performed with Eylea were performed on patients who had never been treated with any medicine for wet ARMD. Though these large clinical trials have demonstrated that overall, both Eylea and Lucentis perform similarly for large groups of untreated patients with wet ARMD, it may be that particular individuals respond better to one medication than the other. However, many patients have been switched between drugs without adverse events in practices across the country. Please ask your retina specialist about the possible reasons for the visual decline, as well as if switching back to Lucentis may be beneficial.
Is there any reason to be concerned that regular use of eReaders could exacerbate mild macular degeneration? [ 09/24/12 ]
There is no evidence that use of computers, tablets, or eReaders is harmful to people with dry or wet age-related macular degeneration (ARMD). In fact, patients with ARMD often benefit from the abilities of these electronic devices to provide increased contrast or enlargement of text. Low vision specialists often recommend such assistive devices when reading for patient with various eye diseases.
Can cataract surgery in a person with dry macular degeneration cause the disease to progress to wet macular degeneration? [ 09/24/12 ]
Numerous studies have been performed to determine if cataract surgery is associated with increased progression of dry age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), or conversion of dry ARMD to wet ARMD. Though some studies found a link between cataract surgery and exacerbation of dry ARMD, many other studies did not find a link. Currently, the consensus is that cataract surgery is not a definite risk factor for progression of dry ARMD.
I am 49 years old and was diagnosed two months ago with myopic degeneration with choroidal neovascularization in my left (non-dominant) eye. I received one injection of Avastin, which thus far has stabilized the vision in my left eye. I am wondering how likely it is that my right eye, which is also highly myopic will be affected by choroidal neovascularization? Also, would scleral buckling reduce my chance of getting choroidal neovascularization in my right eye or slow the progression in my left eye? [ 07/23/12 ]
People with high myopia have a higher risk of developing choroidal neovascularization (CNV). In people who have developed CNV in one eye, the risk of developing this condition in the other eye is around 35 percent. Scleral buckling is a treatment for certain types of retinal detachment and would not typically be helpful in the treatment of CNV or myopic degeneration. People with high myopia are also at higher risk for retinal detachment, so it is important to discuss the warning signs with your retina specialist so that you know what symptoms to watch for.
My wife has wet macular degeneration in both eyes, but she has had the disease in her right eye the longest. Can Eylea be injected in both eyes during the same visit? [ 03/20/12 ]
Eyelea, Avastin, or Lucentis can be injected in both eyes during the same visit if both eyes are in need of treatment. Treatment in both eyes at the same visit is more convenient, but must be balanced with the increased discomfort of having both eyes injected. Please speak to your retinal specialist to determine the most appropriate treatment course for your wife.
I'm 49-year-old female and have been diagnosed with wet age-related macular degeneration (ARMD). I have already had one injection of Lucentis, and would like to know why I'm still losing the sight in my right eye? Doctors think my ARMD is related to trauma, but I haven't had any trauma to my eye since I was a teenager; however, I have had some blows to the head. I want to read my books, but they just cause strain headaches. At work, I am on a computer for 12 hours each day; I have to change the contrast and brightness on the monitor and also turn off the lights because of the eye headaches. Would it hurt to wear a patch over the eye occasionally to give it a rest? [ 03/19/12 ]
Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) is extremely uncommon before age 55, so there is likely some other cause of your macular degeneration. Fortunately, Lucentis is effective as a treatment for a number of different diseases that cause the the growth of new blood vessels in the eye. Without knowing your specific disease and Lucentis dosing schedule I cannot comment specifically on why your vision is getting worse. As a generalization, about 10% of ARMD patients treated with Lucentis lost vision during the clinical trials. Your eye disease may have a higher or lower rate of vision loss with Lucentis treatment compared to patients with ARMD.
Wearing a patch will not damage your eye and may make you feel more comfortable. Changing your prescription or obtaining tinted glasses may also help maximize your visual potential, but you should discuss these issues in more detail with your eye doctor.
During a routine eye examination, a cataract removal was recommended. Pre-operative angiography showed only drusen. After the first cataract procedure, the second eye cataract was removed ten days later. Subsequently, four weeks later, a YAG laser capsulotomy was performed on both eyes. Can you please clarify whether any of the procedures could have caused or accelerated the progression of the wet age-related macular degeneration? [ 03/18/12 ]
Cataract surgery has not been definitively linked to causing or worsening age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) despite multiple studies examining the link between the two. YAG laser capsulotomy has likewise not been linked to causing or worsening ARMD, but this procedure is connected to a slightly higher rate of retinal detachment.