New treatment for Macular Degeneration

There has been much recent media news about the new treatments for macular degeneration which have shown encouraging results. Still only at the clinical trial stage at Moorfields Eye Hospital in  London, the treatment involves the transplantation of stem cell tissue beneath the retina at the back of a patient’s eye.

Macular degeneration (AMD) is the commonest cause of loss of vision in the over-50’s; it affects the central, most delicate part of the retina where nearly all of our detailed vision and colour vision is performed.

 

The condition has two forms; “Dry AMD” which is more common and gradual and “Wet AMD” which has a different cause and is much more rapid in onset. While age is the major factor in its development there are other recognised risk factors such as smoking, diet, and exposure to UV rays outdoors. 

Currently treatments are only available for the Wet form of the condition – they can  involve laser treatment and / or  injections to the eye and can mean a series of visits to hospital. The new treatment is hoped to be a once-and-for-all measure but remains experimental at this stage.

 

Dry AMD can be managed by reducing risk factors where possible – wearing appropriate tinted lenses at all times outdoors, stopping smoking and taking diet supplements have all been shown to be effective at slowing the changes. We are happy to offer suitable advice specific to our patients as to the best ways for them to protect their eyes against this condition.

 

Obviously treatment for both types of the disease is more effective the sooner the condition is detected and at David Bull Optometrists we have invested heavily into equipment which will enable us to examine your macula in the finest of detail. A detailed macular assessment forms part of our comprehensive eye examination, further information can be found on our Eye Care services page.