Normal Amsler Grid appearance.
Appearance of Amsler grid with macular disease.
Note distorted image.
Appearance of Amsler grid with wet AMD.
Note distortion and darkened spot.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of vision loss in persons over 50 years of age world-wide. Millions are affected, and because it is an aging change, AMD is becoming increasingly common as the world population ages.
“Dry” AMD is the earliest stage, and affects everyone with AMD. Most people with dry AMD have good vision on the eye chart, but have increasing difficulty at night and indoors. Severe visual loss with dry AMD is uncommon, and usually occurs when a condition called “geographic atrophy” develops.
“The other day I realized that I was reading the scores at the bottom of the TV screen again. I couldn’t do that before the laser treatment. And the distortion and waviness was gone.” 76 year old woman with dry AMD.
“Wet” AMD is the most common reason people with dry AMD lose vision. This happens when an eye with dry AMD develops scar tissue growth under the center of the retina (called the macula), causing damage that destroys the macula and central, sharp vision. Without macular vision, your ability to read, recognize faces, and drive may be lost.
If you have “dry” AMD, Retinal Protective Therapy TM (RPT) is the first and only retinal treatment to reduce the risk of vision loss in dry AMD. It does this extraordinarily well. The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) showed that vitamins can reduce the risk of visual loss in dry AMD by about 4% per year. RPT can reduce your risk of visual loss by as much as 90%, or more, per year. At the same time, RPT improves indoor vision, making it easier to read and watch TV.
If you have “wet” AMD, RPT helps in several important ways. As you know, drugs injected into the eye are the primary treatment for wet AMD. A recent study of over 220 US retina specialists shows that RPT helps drugs work better in “wet” AMD. What does this mean? First, RPT decreases the number of injections needed by over 50%. Second, despite needing fewer injections, patients receiving RPT have better vision that those getting injections alone. Third, by markedly decreasing injections, RPT reduces the risks of vision-threatening complications of injections, such as macular atrophy and glaucoma.
To maintain maximum treatment benefits, patients with AMD should consider RPT every 4 months. Patients with geographic atrophy may want treatment every 3 months to minimize the risk of progression.