There have been considerable advances in the treatment of certain types of macular degeneration (AMD). We also know that we can be the most helpful if macular degeneration is diagnosed early. However, patients must understand that once the macula has been damaged, there is no treatment that currently can reverse that damage and the associated loss of vision. Early diagnosis and treatment to prevent or halt vision loss must be the approach that we take.
At this time the most effective treatment for age related macular degeneration is the use of therapeutic injections of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Inhibitors (VEGF) to treat Wet Macular Degeneration.
About Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) Inhibitor Injections
Eylea® & Lucentis® Injections
The basic problem that causes catastrophic vision loss from Wet Macular Degeneration is the formation of new fragile blood vessels which break and hemorrhage quite easily. The study of “angiogenesis”, or new blood vessel growth, has given us a large knowledge base in the treatment of Wet Macular Degeneration. Researchers discovered that a specific protein called “Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor” (VEGF) causes the growth of new blood vessels or “neovascularization” to occur in the eye. The intravitreal injections of Eylea® or Lucentis® are very effective in stopping and reversing the neovascularization that can lead to catastrophic vision loss from Wet Macular Degeneration.
Should you have, or be at risk for, Wet Macular Degeneration, we will discuss more about the testing and treatment results with you. We will also be able to tell you more about the length of your actual treatment program, as it varies for each patient. If Eyelea® Injection or Lucentis® Injection is a possible option, we will spend the time necessary to thoroughly review the possible risks, benefits and side effects with you before you decide to proceed.
Diet Considerations, Vitamins & Supplements for Age Related Macular Degeneration
There are a number of studies that have strongly suggested that nutrition may play a role in the likelihood of developing macular degeneration. It appears that people who have a diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables, particularly green leafy vegetables, have a considerably lower incidence of macular degeneration.
It is not yet clear whether taking dietary supplements can prevent progression in patients with existing macular disease, but it does seem clear that certain dietary supplements can reduce your risk of macular degeneration. The Age Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS), which was sponsored by the National Eye Institute, showed that taking high levels of antioxidants and Zinc could reduce the risk of developing Age Related Macular Degeneration by about 25%. This is not a cure, but we need to consider this is one of the possible ways to help patients who are at risk prevent vision loss from age related macular degeneration (AMD).
A VERY SPECIFIC FORMULATION WAS USED IN THIS STUDY
BEFORE patients begin taking any course of vitamin or antioxidant supplements, we will fully discuss the risks and benefits, and if necessary, will determine in consultation with your family physician or Internist, whether this is safe and effective for you.
With early diagnosis it is possible to have a number of treatment options available to help preserve your vision. At D'Ambrosio Eye Care we have the experience and expertise to provide treatment options for macular degeneration including injections of Eylea® and Lucentis® and will take the time necessary to answer your questions and help you get the best possible results.
If you or someone you know has questions about the treatment of age related macular degeneration (AMD) or needs a macular degeneration eye exam you should schedule a visit by calling D'Ambrosio Eye Care at 800-325-3937 to schedule a convenient appointment.