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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What is the treatment for macular degeneration?

  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • 6

    Thanks

    Simon has over 30 years experience in Optometry and Optical Dispensing and is the owner of North Lakes Optometry, an Ethical, Independent Optometry Practice providing … View Profile

    Dry Macular Degeneration: no treatment, though treatments are being developed including new types of laser. Prevention by using the AREDS formula of nutrients - widely available in tablet form, several brands
    Wet Macular degeneration may be amenable to laser treatment of injections of Anti-VEGF drugs (Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor) to deal with the underlying neovascular membrane.

  • 7

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    Rowan has over ten years experience as an optometrist and since graduation from Melbourne University has worked throughout Australia and in the UK, in all … View Profile

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive eye condition which can lead to loss of central vision and is the leading form of blindness in the western world. Currently, only a small proportion of people with AMD are able to receive treatment.

    Now, a clinical research study at the Centre for Eye Research Australia (CERA) is trialling a new laser treatment with the aim of slowing or partially reversing the progression of AMD. Volunteers are being recruited for the LEAD (Laser Intervention for Early Age-Related Macular Degeneration) Study which is aimed at providing an early intervention for AMD. The study is a world-first randomised control trial of nanosecond laser in the treatment of early AMD. It is only for those with the earliest stages of the disease and cannot bring back vision once lost, nor is it able to help if treatments for the ‘wet’ form of AMD have already commenced.

    Participants will be required to attend the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital in Melbourne. Several visits will be required over 36 months. They will undergo several safe and painless tests that include the measure of retinal function through macular perimetry and electroretinography, and novel imaging modalities under the direction of Professor Robyn Guymer. All tests are conducted by very experienced CERA clinical research staff.

    If you have a family history of AMD or have been advised that you have early signs of AMD and are interested in participating in the study, see your optometrist for a comprehensive eye test as a first screening for suitability. 

  • 8

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    Amrina Panda

    HealthShare Member

    Probably you’ve heard that carrots and all orange-shaded fruits and vegetables are good for eye health and improves vision- of course it is true. Beta carotene- a form of Vitamin A gives orange hue to these food, aids retina and other eye parts to work effectively.

    However, eating your way to better vision isn’t just beta carotene- there is something more. Although their link to vision is not very popular, there are some vitamins and minerals which promotes eye health. Include these five foods in your diet and maintain your peepers in good shape.

    Eggs

    The egg’s yolk is a major source for zeaxanthin and lutein and also zinc that helps prevent the risk of macular degeneration.

    Leafy Greens

    Leafy greens are rich of zeaxanthin and lutein- the antioxidants which researches proved that reduce the chance of cataracts and macular degeneration.

    Almonds

    Almonds are packed with Vitamin E that decelerates macular degeneration. As per studies, one ounce or one handful of Almonds covers about half of the Vitamin E dose you require for a day.

    Citrus And Berries

    The Citrus fruits or berries are power houses for vitamin C- has been known to lower the risk of creating macular degeneration as well as cataracts.

    Fatty fish

    Salmon, anchovies, tuna, trout and mackerel contains high levels of DHA- an essential fatty acid that is found in retina. The low levels of DHA is associated with dry eye syndrome.

    Natural Supplements For Good Vision

    In addition to these foods, you can go for natural supplements which protects macular region of the eye from harmful blue light damage and aids to improve the density of the macular pigment in the eye. Some natural eye care supplements also improves eye vision sharpness.

  • 1

    Thanks

    Dr John H. Chang

    Ophthalmologist (Eye Specialist)

    Dr John Chang is a Sydney-based ophthalmologist with specialist training in cataract surgery, medical retina and comprehensive ophthalmology. At his Strathfield practice, Dr Chang provides … View Profile

    As an ophthalmologist, I will focus on treatment for wet macular degeneration (AMD), as other answers have already described the role of good diet and vitamin supplements for dry AMD. 

    Wet macular degeneration can lead to rapid vision loss and so it must be diagnosed and treated as a matter of urgency. Symptoms may include difficulty reading, wavy or distorted vision, or a dark shadow in the centre of your vision that makes recognizing faces or watching TV difficult. Such symptoms can come up quite quickly over days or weeks, and there is no eye pain. Such symptoms must be followed up by urgent retina examination by your optometrist or eye specialst. 

    As an ophthalmologist and retinal specialist, I commence treatment for wet AMD for my patients on the same day as their diagnosis, because studies have shown that earlier, prompt treatment leads to the best visual outcomes. Treatment can be done safely and comfortably in the eye clinic. Currently available licensed medications such as Lucentis, Eylea and Avastin, can be given comfortably via an eye injection. The doctor will perform the procedure and will explain everything carefully beforehand. Patients do not see or feel the needle in anyway. There is no required rest after treatment and patients are back to their normal activities very quickly.

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