Age Related Macular degeneration (ARMD) is a progressive, degenerative eye disease that disrupts your central vision: the vision you need to see fine details and recognize faces.
Dry ARMD is the most common form of ARMD. 90% of all macular degeneration cases are the dry form of ARMD. Dry ARMD can occur when there is a collection of drusen under the macula (yellow deposits comprised of a fatty protein). As these build up, they can cause the retinal tissue to dry out and become thinner. Specific vitamins and minerals can help slow the progression of the disease. As of March 2023, the FDA has approved a new treatment for Dry ARMD – Syfovre.
Wet ARMD: Wet ARMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels grow under the macula, and is often preceded by dry ARMD. Although not as common as dry ARMD, it is oftentimes more serious because if the abnormal blood vessels leak fluid or bleed, rapid vision loss can occur. In wet ARMD, high intraocular levels of the protein vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) are produced. Wet ARMD cannot be cured, but its progression may be blocked with the use of intravitreal anti-VEGF injections such as Avastin, EYLEA©, or VABYSMO®. These injections may preserve, and even recover, vision.
Regular eye exams are important to the early diagnosis and treatment of age-related macular degeneration. The team at Pendleton Eye Center uses a variety of tests to make an accurate diagnosis including:
The proper treatment will depend on the type and severity of your condition. Management for ARMD at Pendleton Eye Center Include:
The most appropriate treatment strategy for your ARMD will depend on the severity of your disease, and its response to treatment. Dr. Pendleton will monitor your vision and adjust treatment strategies as needed. Many patients find their needs vary over time. If you have wet ARMD, Dr. Pendleton will work with you to minimize the number of injections and maximize your vision.
A series of monthly injections are given until the retina is “dry” (free of blood and fluid), and/or the vision can no longer be improved. Monitoring visits are then carried out at regular intervals and treatment is resumed only if fluid returns.
A series of monthly injections is given until the retina is “dry”. The interval between injections is then slowly increased in one to two-week increments. If fluid returns, the interval between injections is shortened.
Once the retina is “dry”, injections are repeated at regular intervals. The interval between injections is rarely shorter than one month.
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