The macula is a part of the retina in the back of the eye that ensures clear and sharp central vision. Macular degeneration varies widely in severity. For some people, the disease causes only slight distortion. In the worst cases, it can lead to a complete loss of central vision, making reading or driving impossible. Age-related macular degeneration is the most common cause of vision loss in the United States for people 50 or older, and the chance of getting the disease increases with age. Fortunately, in most cases AMD does not cause total blindness since it usually does not affect the peripheral vision.
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In most cases, damage that has already occurred from macular
degeneration cannot be reversed, making early detection very important
for vision preservation. The goal of macular degeneration treatment is
to stop further vision loss. There are two kinds of macular
degeneration: "wet" and "dry." Treatment is based on which form is
Symptoms often associated with macular degeneration include a
gradual loss of ability to see objects clearly, distorted vision,
gradual loss of color vision, and/or a dark or empty area appearing in
the center of vision.