What are the Symptoms of Macular Degeneration?

Macular degeneration, often referred to as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), primarily affects central vision and can lead to vision loss. Symptoms of macular degeneration may include:

  • Blurred Vision: A gradual or sudden loss of clear, central vision, making it difficult to see fine details.
  • Distorted Vision: Straight lines may appear wavy or bent, which can affect the perception of shapes.
  • Dark or Empty Area in Central Vision: A dark spot may develop in the center of the visual field.
  • Difficulty Recognizing Faces: Struggles to recognize faces, especially those of familiar individuals.
  • Difficulty Reading: Difficulty reading small print or focusing on written material.
  • Increased Blurriness or Fogginess: Vision becomes increasingly unclear, making it challenging to perform daily tasks.
  • Altered Color Perception: Colors may appear faded or less vibrant than usual.
  • Sensitivity to Light: Increased sensitivity to light, especially bright lights or glare.
  • Decreased Brightness or Dimness in Vision: A perception of decreased brightness or reduced ability to see in low-light conditions.

It’s important to note that macular degeneration typically progresses slowly and may affect one or both eyes. There are two main types of AMD: dry AMD (gradual, with the presence of drusen) and wet AMD (more rapid, with abnormal blood vessel growth).

Regular eye examinations, especially for individuals over 50 or with a family history of AMD, are essential for early detection and appropriate management. If you experience any changes in your vision or notice symptoms associated with macular degeneration, consult an eye care professional for a comprehensive eye exam and diagnosis. Early intervention and appropriate management can help slow the progression of the disease and preserve vision.