Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

What is AMD?

AMD is an eye condition common in people 50 and older. It damages the macula, which is the part of the retina responsible for providing sharp and central vision required for seeing objects clearly. It can result in vision loss in the centre of the visual field.

AMD is the leading cause of vision loss in older adults, and can make it difficult to identify faces, read, write, and drive. However, AMD does not result in complete blindness; peripheral vision remains intact. It can affect one eye or both eyes simultaneously.

There are three stages of AMD: early, intermediate, and advanced. Vision loss typically only occurs at the advanced stage of the condition. The stage of the condition is determined by the size and number of drusen, which are yellow deposits under the retina.

What is the difference between dry and wet AMD?

The two types of AMD are dry and wet. Dry AMD is the most common form. It results when the light-sensitive cells in the macula break down, gradually blurring central vision in the affected eye. While rarer, wet AMD is more severe and can progress rapidly. It occurs when new blood vessels under the macula leak blood and fluid. The dry form of AMD is always the precursor to wet AMD, and it is impossible to tell whether dry AMD will turn into the wet form. The wet form of AMD is more severe, often times treated with injections into the cavity of the eye. These injections may halt or even reverse the process of wet AMD, but may need to be repeated long term in some patients.

Who is at risk for dry AMD?

Men and women over 50 are at a higher risk of developing dry AMD. Risk of developing dry AMD also increases if you have a family history of the condition. Lifestyle factors such as high cholesterol, obesity, hypertension, and smoking may also increase the risk of developing dry AMD.

What exam is done to test for dry AMD?

There are a variety of tests that can be conducted to detect the presence of dry AMD. A visual acuity test can be done to determine how well you can see at distances. A dilated eye exam may be done where the eye care professional places drops in your eye to widen the pupils. A clinical examination is often adequate to determine the presence of dry AMD changes such as drusen, or the more severe form of wet AMD, which often presents with hemorrhages and retinal fluid.

Are there treatments available?

You may be encouraged to make lifestyle and dietary changes, as well as to begin taking vitamin and antioxidant supplements. SMOKING IS LINKED TO THE PROGRESSION OF AMD.

Recommended for you:

  • PreserVision – 2/ day
  • Vitalux – 2/ day

Vitamin Supplementation & Dry AMD

There are many scientific efforts put forth to examine how vitamin supplementation may help prevent, treat, or slow the progression of AMD. The most prominent and recent study is the Age-Related Eye Disease Study 2 (AREDS2) which devised a formulation to improve the condition of patients with dry AMD. The AREDS2 formulation reduces the risk of vision loss from dry AMD and slows the progression of the disease.

Zinc 25mg
Cooper 2mg
Lutein 10mg
Zeaxanthin 2mg
Vitamin C 500mg
Vitamin E 400 IU


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