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Age-Related Macular Degeneration Hero

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

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What is Age-Related Macular Degeneration?

As we age, slight vision changes are to be expected. Age-related macular degeneration, however, leads to much more severe vision loss. Sometimes referred to as AMD, age-related macular generation occurs when the macula deteriorates. The macula is the central area of the retina and it controls visual acuity, which is your ability to see detail.

In most cases, AMD affects people over the age of 50. It’s the leading cause of vision loss in Americans over the age of 65, making regular eye exams essential to protecting your vision.

Types of AMD

The most common form of AMD is dry AMD. 90% of people with AMD have dry, or nonexudative AMD. Dry AMD is often the less severe form of AMD and it’s only responsible for 10 to 20% of AMD cases that cause severe vision loss. However, it’s still important that dry AMD is caught early because it can develop into the more serious form of the disease, wet AMD.

Wet AMD is the more severe type of AMD. Also known as exudative AMD, wet AMD occurs when abnormal vessels grow in the retina and begin to leak fluid or blood in the macula. Eventually, as the fluid collects, it causes blurry and distorted vision. Even though wet AMD only affects 10% of people with AMD, it is responsible for 80% to 90% of AMD cases that lead to vision loss.

How We Diagnose & Manage AMD

Yearly Eye Exams

An eye exam once a year is the best way to protect your sight from AMD and other diseases. Annual eye exams are an opportunity for your optometrist to check your vision for slight changes, allowing AMD to be detected as soon as possible. If your optometrist is concerned about AMD, they may perform a dilated eye exam. They may base this decision on your medical history, family history, and early warning signs of AMD.

AMD Risk Factors

At your annual eye exam, your optometrist will assess your likelihood of developing or having AMD. Risk factors they might take into consideration include:

  • Advancing age, especially over age 65
  • Family history of AMD
  • Cardiovascular disease, including hypertension
  • Smoking

Warning Signs of AMD

Vision changes like blurred or distorted vision can be signs of AMD. The disease leads to a loss of visual acuity, or your ability to see details. In many cases, people with AMD may have trouble driving or recognizing faces. Some may also have difficulty with tasks like reading and may find themselves using a magnifying glass to see small print.

If you notice these or any other changes in your vision, visit your optometrist right away.

Nutritional Supplementation

Nutritional supplementation is a technique used to manage the progression of AMD. Some studies have shown that foods containing carotenoids can help reduce AMD, especially wet AMD. Carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin act as antioxidants and help to protect the retina. Fruits and vegetables are often rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, including:

  • Apples
  • Mangoes
  • Kiwis
  • Grapes
  • Pumpkin
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Green beans
  • Broccoli
  • Cucumber
  • Corn
  • Orange juice

Our Services

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D.C. Capitol Hill

Our D.C. Capitol Hill location is conveniently located on Pennsylvania Avenue, between Hank’s Oyster Bar and the 7-Eleven.

Contact

Phone: 202.546.2838

Capitol Hill

635 Pennsylvania Ave SE
Washington, DC 20003

Hours

Monday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM – 6 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Friday
8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Sunday
Closed
D.C. Capitol Hill

D.C. Capitol Hill

Our D.C. Capitol Hill location is conveniently located on Pennsylvania Avenue, between Hank’s Oyster Bar and the 7-Eleven.

Contact

Phone: 202.546.2838

Capitol Hill

635 Pennsylvania Ave SE
Washington, DC 20003

Hours

Monday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM – 6 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Friday
8:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Sunday
Closed

McLean

Our McLean location is conveniently located on Old McLean Village Drive next to Focal Point Homes.

Contact

Phone: 703.356.1292

McLean

6740 Old McLean Village Drive
McLean, VA 22101

Hours

Monday
9:00 AM – 6 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM – 4 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM – 6 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Friday
9:00 AM – 4 PM
Saturday
Closed
Sunday
Closed
McLean

McLean

Our McLean location is conveniently located on Old McLean Village Drive next to Focal Point Homes.

Contact

Phone: 703.356.1292

McLean

6740 Old McLean Village Drive
McLean, VA 22101

Hours

Monday
9:00 AM – 6 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM – 4 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM – 6 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM – 5 PM
Friday
9:00 AM – 4 PM
Saturday
Closed
Sunday
Closed

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