Concerning the dry type of macular degeneration:
Unfortunately there is no way to rid yourself of the dry type of macular degeneration once it has started. The best thing you can do is to eat well and live a healthy lifestyle as you have already begun. Also, it is very important to stop smoking if you do so.
Lastly, a special formulation of multi-vitamins was proven in the Age-Related Eye Disease Study to slow the progression of dry macular degeneration and decrease the incidence of severe vision loss in macular degeneration. To that end, I would recommend buying one of these supplements (they can be found at any drug store over-the-counter) and start using them. There are many brand names available.ocuvite, and Icaps are some examples.
All of the ocular vitamins that follow the formula recommended in the AREDS study are of equal efficacy; but if you have smoked before in your life, do not take any of these supplements that have Vitamin A (also called beta-carotene
) in them because that can increase your risk for lung cancer. There are formulations available without the high doses of Vitamin A for those people who smoke.
Concerning Wet age related macular degeneration:
Before we had lucetis, avastin
or afibercept the only treatment we had for subfoveal (in the center of your vision) wet AMD was laser, either the "hot" type or the "cool" type (photodynamic therapy). Now with these drugs we have something that can 'dry up' wet AMD without destroying the photoreceptors....in other words, preserve vision.
Now. To answer your question: The injections do "stop" wet AMD in the sense that they stop the leakage.....however, those nasty, leaky blood vessels tend to come back, hence more injections. And the cycle goes round and round.
In many cases the injections preserve vision for a long time. Forever? Maybe in some lucky patients, but in many the recurring leakage slowly damages the photoreceptors and vision declines.
That a being said, these three drugs are the best thing to happen to my ability to treat patients with wet AMD since the invention of fluorescein angiography.
What is the take home message in a nut shell? Yes it can still progress, but sometimes it doesn't. The hope is that, with the help of your retina specialist and Avasitin/lucentis
, you will get hit by a bus and not need your eyes anymore before you lose significant vision. :o)
Does this make sense to you?
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