A Look at Macular Degeneration: Sources

TITLE: A Look At Macular Degeneration

SUBTITLE: A Leading Cause of Vision Loss

SECTION 1 HEADING: The macula is located in the back of the eye, and is responsible for our sharp, clear, straight ahead vision. Damage to it results in blind spots and blurred or distorted vision.

  • BrightFocus Foundation, National Eye Institute, and the National Library of Medicine.

SECTION 1 BODY: Macular degeneration affects the retina, a paper thin tissue lining the back of the eye, and causes the cells in the macula area to die.

  • BrightFocus Foundation, National Eye Institute and the National Library of Medicine.

SECTION 2 HEADING: The Scope of Macular Degeneration.

SECTION 2: BODY: Roughly 2 million people have advanced AMD. 

  • “Forecasting Age-Related Macular Degeneration Through the Year 2050—The Potential Impact of New Treatments”. David B. Rein, PhD; John S. Wittenborn, BS; Xinzhi Zhang, MD, PhD; Amanda A. Honeycutt, PhD; Sarah B. Lesesne, BS; Jinan Saaddine, MD, MPH; for the Vision Health Cost-Effectiveness Study Group. Archives of Ophthalmology. 127(4):533-540. April 2009. http://archopht.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/short/127/4/533.

SECTION 2 BODY: Incidence is expected to double by 2050. .

  • “Forecasting Age-Related Macular Degeneration Through the Year 2050 — The Potential Impact of New Treatments”. David B. Rein, PhD; John S. Wittenborn, BS; Xinzhi Zhang, MD, PhD; Amanda A. Honeycutt, PhD; Sarah B. Lesesne, BS; Jinan Saaddine, MD, MPH; for the Vision Health Cost-Effectiveness Study Group. Archives of Ophthalmology. 127(4):533-540. April 2009. http://archopht.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/short/127/4/533

SECTION 2 BODY: 33 million people have visual impairment from advanced AMD worldwide.

  • "The Global Economic Cost of Visual Impairment" Access Economics, prepared for AMD Alliance International, March 2013 Table III

SECTION 2 BODY: By 2020, 40 million people will have visual impairment from advanced AMD.

  • "The Global Economic Cost of Visual Impairment" Access Economics, prepared for AMD Alliance International, March 2013 Table III

SECTION 2 BODY: $343 billion is the estimated cost of visual impairment in the world due to advanced AMD. Of that, $252 billion were direct health care costs.

  • "The Global Economic Cost of Visual Impairment" Access Economics, prepared for AMD Alliance International, March 2013 Table III

SECTION 2 BODY: The number of people living with macular degeneration is similar to that of those who have been diagnosed with all types of invasive cancers.

SECTION 3 HEADING: Forms of Macular Degeneration

SECTION 3 BODY: Dry AMD is the most comment form. It progresses slowly. Yellow deposits called drusen form and accumulate under the retina. Drusen leads to cell death resulting in loss of clear straight ahead vision.

SECTION 3 BODY: Wet AMD accounts for 10% of cases of AMD, and results in the vast majority of severe vision loss from AMD. Wet AMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels grow behind the macula and leak fluid and blood resulting in scarring of the macula. Straight ahead vision can become distorted or lost entirely in a short period of time. It is possible for a person to suffer from both forms.

SECTION 3 BODY: Juvenile macular degeneration is the term used for several inherited eye diseases, including Stargardt's, Best disease, and juvenile retinoschisis.

SECTION 4 HEADING: Symptoms of Age-Related Macular Degeneration. There are often no symptoms in the early stages of the disease. it's important to schedule an eye exam.

SECTION 4 BODY: List of Symptoms

SECTION 5 HEADING: Who is at Risk?

SECTION 5 BODY: List of Risk Factors

SECTION 5 BODY: People with macular degeneration in one eye are more likely to develop in the other eye.

SECTION 6 HEADING: Tests for Macular Degeneration

SECTION 6 BODY: List of diagnostic tests

SECTION 7 HEADING: Treatments

SECTION 7 BODY: List of current available treatments (May 2014)

SECTION 5 BODY: Prescription eye drops and occasionally pills

  • BrightFocus Foundation

SECTION 8 HEADING: Living with Macular Degeneration

SECTION 8 BODY: Of people with low vision, 63% reported falls that resulted in injury.

  • “The Silver Book®: Vision Loss Volume II: Chronic Disease and Medical Innovation in an Aging Nation,” Alliance for Aging Research, and partner, Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (AEVR), 2011, Cost of Vision Loss, The Burden of Vision Loss/The Human Burden section, Age-Related Macular Degeneration stats, p. 10 www.silverbook.org/visionloss
  • Wood, Joanne M., Phillippe Lacherez, Alex A. Black, Michael H. Cole, Mei Ying Boon, and Graham K. Kerr. 2011. Risk of Falls, Injurious Falls, and Other Injuries Resulting from Visual Impairment among Older Adults with Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 52(8):5088-92.

SECTION 8 BODY: People with wet AMD are more likely to have problems with: making phone calls, managing finances, completing light housework, shopping, and cooking.

  • “The Silver Book®: Vision Loss Volume II: Chronic Disease and Medical Innovation in an Aging Nation,” Alliance for Aging Research, and partner, Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (AEVR), 2011, Cost of Vision Loss, The Burden of Vision Loss/The Human Burden section, Age-Related Macular Degeneration stats, p. 10 www.silverbook.org/visionloss
  • Wood, Joanne M., Phillippe Lacherez, Alex A. Black, Michael H. Cole, Mei Ying Boon, and Graham K. Kerr. 2011. Risk of Falls, Injurious Falls, and Other Injuries Resulting from Visual Impairment among Older Adults with Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 52(8):5088-92.

SECTION 8 BODY: Living with Vision Loss: Seeing with Peripheral Vision, Consult a Low Vision Therapist, Make Home Adjustments, Protection from Sun, Emphasize other Senses.

Last Review: 06/04/14

Don't miss out.
Receive research updates, inspiring stories, and expert advice
Keep me informed about: *
Please select at least one.
You must select at least one disease category.
Please enter your first name.
Please enter your last name.