Friday, June 24, 2011

I would like to report on one disease that affects the Retina: Macular degeneration. According to the National Eye institute, the macular is located in the center of the retina. Macular degeneration is associated with aging. The retina is a soft tissue at the back of the eye that converts light or an image into electrical impulses that are sent to the brain to create an image. There are two types of Macular degeneration wet and dry. Wet macular degeneration occurs when abnormal blood vessels behind the retina start to grow under the macula. These new blood vessels tend to be very fragile and often leak blood and fluid. The blood and fluid raise the macula from its normal place at the back of the eye. Damage to the macula occurs rapidly. Dry occurs when the light-sensitive cells in the macula slowly break down, gradually blurring central vision in the affected eye. As dry AMD gets worse, you may see a blurred spot in the center of your vision. Over time, as less of the macula functions, central vision is gradually lost in the affected eye. The most common is dry and it occurs in anyone 65 and older. Macular Degeneration most common in White females, those who have a history of smoking, and obesity also it's pass down in families. Someone with Macular Degeneration would see this First it's just dots and until it progresses to this stage and eventually there maybe some flashes of lights Macular Degeneration can be detected by eye exams such as visual acuity test, dilated eye exam and tonometry. Treatments are laser eye surgery to destroy the weak leaky blood vessels, Photodymanic therapy is where a drug called Verteporfin is injected into your arm; this drug travels throughout the body, including the new blood vessels in your eye i, it attaches to the vessel once a light is shined into the eye the drug destroys the bad vessels. A third treatment are injections to help regrow the blood vessel but with this treatment multiply injects are required. In 1999, I was part of a parish program where you can adopt a grandparent and the lady that my family adopted began to suffer from Macular Degeneration. She never smoked or drank but her mother had the same condition. She would only recognize you by the sound of your voice or by touch. She use the injections to try to rebuild some of the blood vessel back but Eventually she lost her sight.

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting post. Relating to this information, my boyfriend has type one diabetes and we are constantly looking into the possible health risks he is more apt to suffer from, eye problems and diseases are a giant factor and fear when it comes to diabetes. Already he has seen significant visual impairment just at the age of 22 alone and studies have shown that there is a correlation between diabetes and macular degeneration as well. Having said this, it is extremely important that he preserve whatever vision he has let for as long as possible and we have found that there are a few ways of doing this. Research has shown a positive correlation between the consumption of antioxidants and the slowing of the progression of macular degeneration. An article on (which can be found at this url ), stated that intake of lutein, carotenoids, vitamins C and E and zinc, as well as through eating leafy green vegetables, carrots, and food sources rich in antioxidants are a wonderful source for slowing the progression of macular degeneration, or even in some cases, preventing it all together! I feel that after reading your post and having done some research of my own, it is extremely important for all individuals, especially those with diseases such as diabetes, to take care of our eyes- after all, we're all aging!