What is age-related macular degeneration?

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive eye condition affecting the macula, the central portion of the retina responsible for sharp, central vision. This degenerative disease primarily impacts older adults and can lead to severe vision impairment or blindness if left untreated. As a specialist with a focus on ophthalmic conditions, Dr Shastry possesses extensive expertise in diagnosing and managing AMD.

What are the symptoms of age-related macular degeneration?

Individuals affected by AMD might encounter an array of symptoms, such as central vision becoming blurred or distorted, experiencing challenges in reading or recognising faces, and noticing the emergence of dark spots or distortion in the central visual field. Occasionally, there may be a gradual decline in colour perception or an escalation in visual disturbances, such as straight lines appearing wavy or crooked. These symptoms can substantially disrupt daily activities like driving or reading, motivating individuals to seek assessment and treatment from specialists like Dr Shastry. 

How do you diagnose age-related macular degeneration?

Diagnosing AMD typically involves a comprehensive eye examination, which may include visual acuity tests, dilated eye exams, optical coherence tomography (OCT) scans, and fluorescein angiography. During these assessments, Dr Shastry evaluates the health of the retina, identifies any abnormalities or signs of degeneration in the macula, and determines the stage and severity of AMD. Early detection is crucial for initiating timely interventions to preserve vision and prevent further progression of the disease.

How do you treat age-related macular degeneration?

While there is currently no cure for AMD, several treatment options are available to help manage the condition and minimise vision loss. Depending on the type and stage of AMD, Dr Shastry might suggest lifestyle adjustments, such as embracing a nutritious diet abundant in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids, quitting smoking, and shielding the eyes from harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.

In cases of neovascular or "wet" AMD, doctors may opt for intravitreal injections of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) drugs. These injections aim to inhibit the abnormal growth of blood vessels and reduce fluid leakage within the retina. For individuals with non-neovascular or "dry" AMD, dietary supplements containing vitamins and minerals like zinc and vitamin C may be recommended to bolster retinal health and slow disease progression.



1. Can AMD be cured?

At present, there exists no cure for AMD. Nonetheless, numerous treatment alternatives exist to aid in the management of the condition and mitigate vision decline. Timely detection and intervention play a pivotal role in safeguarding vision and impeding the advancement of the disease.

2. Can lifestyle changes help prevent or manage AMD?

Indeed, embracing a healthy lifestyle can diminish the likelihood of AMD development and potentially decelerate its progression. This entails adhering to a well-rounded diet abundant in antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids, quitting smoking, controlling cardiovascular risk factors, shielding the eyes from UV light exposure, and arranging routine eye check-ups.

3. How often should individuals with AMD undergo eye examinations

Individuals with AMD should undergo regular eye examinations as recommended by their eye care provider. The frequency of these examinations may vary depending on the stage and severity of AMD, but they are typically recommended at least once a year or as directed by the specialist. Early detection and monitoring are essential for managing AMD effectively.