February is Age-Related Macular Degeneration Month.
Did you know that Macular Degeneration is the number one cause of vision loss and there is no cure, so it’s important to treat it as soon as possible.
How it works:
Macular degeneration occurs when the central portion of the retina (macula) deteriorates. Because the macula is responsible for focusing our vision, this leads to vision loss. It is unclear what causes the macula to deteriorate, although there are some factors that have been known to contribute to the cause. People with a family history of the disease, Caucasians, and smoking all increase the risk of age-related macular degeneration.
The earliest sign of macular degeneration is a fatty deposit beneath the retina, not vision loss. The only way to find early warning signs is by a medical professional. This is another reason why it is important to have an annual eye exam. As the degeneration gets worse, vision loss will occur.
At the Black Hills Regional Eye Institute, we are fortunate to have Dr. Abraham on our team. She is a leading physician in retina services and spends much of her time participating in clinical research trials linked to macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and vein occlusions. As always, have annual vision checks to watch for the signs and symptoms of macular degeneration.