What Is Age-Related Macular Degeneration or ARMD?
The macula on the retina provides sharp, central vision. The breakdown of the macula is a disease called macular degeneration, and can be serious. Untreated macular degeneration is one of the leading causes of blindness in those over 65 years old.
While researchers have not yet discovered a cure for age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), there are treatment options which prevent the disease from progressing to blindness, and in some cases, they can even improve vision. It’s important to have an open discussion with your eye doctor about the risks and limitations of ARMD treatments.
Types of Macular Degeneration:
There are 2 basic types of ARMD, the wet form and the dry form.
- Dry macular degeneration is considered the less aggressive form of ARMD. It typically progresses much more slowly, and the level of eyesight damage is less severe. Dry ARMD is detected during routine eye exams, which is why it’s important to have yearly testing. Treating Dry AMD often involves high doses of zinc and antioxidants which have been shown to slow diseases progression.
- Wet macular degeneration is the more severe form of ARMD. Call us to book an emergency eye doctor's appointment if you experience a sudden worsening of blurry central vision. Wet ARMD occurs when there is abnormal blood vessel growth (angiogenesis), and leakage, which can cause scar tissue to develop. Treatments include laser surgery, injecting light-sensitive dyes, or AMD medication injected directly into the eye to inhibit angiogenesis.
AdaptDx® Dark Adaptometer
The AdaptDx aids in the detection and management of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by measuring the eye’s ability to adjust from bright light to darkness. This is called dark adaptation. When you turn off the light in a room and wait for your eyes to adjust, you are experiencing dark adaptation. Clinical studies have shown that impaired or slow dark adaptation can indicate the subclinical AMD at least three years before drusen or spots on the retina are visible.
The AdaptDx Rapid Test is very easy to take – you just look into the device and push a button each time you see a light. The doctor will have your results immediately to discuss the findings and any next steps that may be required. The AdaptDx is made in the USA by MacuLogix® and is cleared for use by the FDA.
Impaired dark adaptation stipulates the presence of AMD (even before any visible drusen).
- Dark Adaptation detects signs of Age Related Macular Degeneration
- Early Accurate Detection - Detects Macular Degeneration up to 3 years earlier than any symptoms
- Monitors Progression before vision loss - (delays vision loss)
- Slows the progression through treatment and disease management
Who qualifies for the screening?/Risk Factors for ARMD
- Anyone with a family history of ARMD
- Over the age of 50
- Complaining of trouble with night vision
- Heart Disease, High Blood Pressure, High Cholesterol
Functional testing for impaired dark adaptation not only helps to accurately detect ARMD it is also a tool used to monitor the disease and measure treatment effectiveness.
We are also one of if not the ONLY practice on Long Island that has this device.
Is the AdaptDx® test covered by insurance?
If there is a medical diagnosis related to AMD or you are experiencing trouble seeing or driving at night, the AdaptDx may be covered by your insurance provider. If not, the AdaptDx test may require a modest out-of-pocket expense.
Learn More About ARMD
ARMD is an age-related eye disease that runs in families and is a leading cause of blindness in our aging population. There is no cure for this ocular disease, and ARMD related vision loss cannot usually be recovered. There are treatments, and preventative measures that can be taken, if detected early, so routine eye exams are essential.
Read more about macular degeneration symptoms and treatment.
Special thanks to the EyeGlass Guide for informational material that aided in the creation of this website.