Age-Related Macular Degeneration: Types, Symptoms, and Advanced Treatment Options

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of vision loss among individuals aged 50 and older. It occurs when the macula, the central part of the retina responsible for clear and detailed vision, deteriorates over time. Although AMD does not typically lead to complete blindness, it can cause significant impairment in central vision, affecting daily tasks such as reading, writing, driving, and recognizing faces.

At Valley Laser Eye Centre in Abbotsford, BC, our dedicated team of eye care professionals is committed to providing valuable information, exceptional care, and state-of-the-art treatment options for individuals affected by age-related macular degeneration. In this in-depth blog post, we will explore the different types of AMD, outline the common symptoms, and discuss the cutting-edge treatment options available at our clinic.

Rely on Valley Laser Eye Centre for expert guidance and support in managing age-related macular degeneration and maintaining your vision. Schedule a consultation with our skilled eye care professionals to discuss your concerns, assess your eye health, and explore the most appropriate treatment options for AMD. Experience personalized care tailored to your unique needs with the assistance of our knowledgeable team, ensuring optimal eye health and well-being.

Types of Age-Related Macular Degeneration

There are two primary types of age-related macular degeneration: dry AMD and wet AMD. Understanding the distinctions between the two forms is essential for determining the appropriate course of treatment.

1. Dry AMD: Dry AMD, the most common form of the condition, occurs when the macula’s light-sensitive cells gradually deteriorate due to the accumulation of protein deposits known as drusen. In the early stages, dry AMD may be asymptomatic or present only mild vision changes. However, as the condition progresses, affected individuals may experience significant central vision loss.

2. Wet AMD: Wet AMD, also called neovascular AMD, develops when abnormal blood vessels grow beneath the macula, leaking blood and fluid that damages the retina. Although wet AMD is less common than dry AMD, it often leads to more severe vision loss. Wet AMD can develop rapidly, making early detection and intervention crucial in preserving vision.

Identifying the Symptoms of Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Symptoms of age-related macular degeneration can vary based on the stage and type of the condition. Some common symptoms to be aware of include:

1. Blurred or distorted central vision: This may manifest as difficulty reading, recognizing faces, or perceiving fine details.

2. Diminished colour perception: Colors may appear duller or less vibrant than before.

3. Straight lines appearing wavy or curved: This distortion is often more pronounced in wet AMD.

4. Presence of a blind spot in the central vision: As AMD progresses, a central area of vision loss may develop, hindering daily activities.

If you or a loved one experiences any of these symptoms, it is essential to consult an eye care professional for a comprehensive evaluation and appropriate management.

Regular Eye Examinations and Early Detection of AMD

Early detection of age-related macular degeneration is vital for initiating appropriate treatment and preserving vision. A comprehensive eye examination with an experienced eye care professional can reveal early signs of AMD, even before symptoms are noticeable. These examinations typically include:

1. Visual acuity testing: This assesses the sharpness of your central vision, helping detect any changes or impairments.

2. Dilated eye examination: By dilating the pupils, the eye care professional gains a clearer view of the retina and optic nerve to identify any abnormalities or signs of AMD.

3. Optical coherence tomography (OCT): This non-invasive imaging technique captures highly detailed, cross-sectional images of the retina, helping identify any signs of thinning or swelling related to AMD.

Regular eye examinations and consistent monitoring are crucial for early detection and effective management of age-related macular degeneration.

Innovative Treatment Options for AMD at Valley Laser Eye Centre

Although there is no cure for age-related macular degeneration, various treatment options can help manage the condition and slow its progression. At Valley Laser Eye Centre, our skilled team offers advanced treatment solutions based on the type and severity of AMD:

1. Nutritional Supplements: For individuals with intermediate or advanced dry AMD, certain nutritional supplements, such as those containing the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, may help slow the progression of the condition.

2. Anti-VEGF Therapy: For wet AMD, injectable medications that inhibit the growth of abnormal blood vessels (anti-vascular endothelial growth factor or anti-VEGF) can slow the progression and improve visual outcomes.

3. Photodynamic Therapy (PDT): This treatment involves injecting a light-sensitive drug into the bloodstream, followed by the application of a special light to the retina. PDT can help reduce the leakage of fluid from abnormal blood vessels and slow the advancement of wet AMD.

4. Lifestyle Modifications: Adopting a healthy diet, engaging in regular physical activity, and ceasing smoking can contribute to overall eye health and reduce the risk of AMD progression.

Our eye care professionals will carefully evaluate your eye health and devise an individualized treatment plan to manage age-related macular degeneration while preserving your vision.


Age-related macular degeneration is a prevalent cause of vision loss among older adults. By understanding the types, recognizing the symptoms, and seeking timely treatment, individuals can take proactive steps to maintain their eye health and preserve their vision.

At Valley Laser Eye Centre in Abbotsford, BC, our dedicated team of eye care professionals is committed to providing exceptional care and advanced treatment options for individuals affected by age-related macular degeneration. Schedule a consultation at our Abbotsford laser eye clinic to assess your eye health, discuss your concerns, and explore suitable treatment options tailored to your specific needs. Trust our experienced and knowledgeable team to support you through your journey, helping you manage AMD and maintain your vision.

Disclaimer: This blog post does not replace medical advice and should not be implemented prior to consulting a fully certified medical professional.



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