macular degeneration

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macular degeneration,

eye disorder causing loss of central vision. The affected area, the macula, lies at the back of the retina and is the part that produces the sharpest vision. The most serious visual impairment occurs when abnormal blood vessels form and leak serous fluid or bleed into the tissue of the macula, ultimately producing scar tissue. Peripheral (side) vision is unaffected. Onset may be acute with hemorrhage but usually is gradually progressive. Although some vision is retained, the ability to read, recognize faces, and drive a motor vehicle is greatly reduced. The condition is painless.

Macular degeneration is a major cause of vision impairment among elderly people. Although its underlying cause is unknown, it sometimes appears to run in families. Serious macular degeneraton, if diagnosed early, may have its progress stemmed by laser or photodynamic (cold laser and drug) treatment that closes leaking vessels. Antiangiogenic drugs, which inhibit the formation of new blood vessels, can be injected into the eye to stop degeneration and in some cases even improve vision. Sudden change in vision in someone over age 50 thus requires immediate medical attention.


See H. Grunwald, Twilight: Losing Sight, Gaining Insight (1999).

References in periodicals archive ?
In our opinion, simple illusions like macropsia or micropsia, metamorphopsia, illumination, colour or clarity, dysmorphopsia, plagiopsia, and achromatopsia may be explained by the loss of balance of this longitudinal temporooccipital network.
A 16-year-old female was referred to clinic with a 6-month history of gradual decline in visual acuity and metamorphopsia. There was no relevant medical or previous ocular history.
Decrease in visual acuity was the most common presenting symptom followed by central scotoma and metamorphopsia. This is in accordance with the previous published results.17
Long-term follow-up with optical coherence tomography and microperimetry in eyes with metamorphopsia after macula-off retinal detachment repair.
Of the 26 participants who completed the questionnaire, 17 (65%) did not report any symptoms of metamorphopsia, while 9 (35%) responded to one or more items with the perception of at least a minimal distortion.
Orthostatic hypotension with repeated bilateral limb shaking and metamorphopsia. A case of hemodynamic transient ischemic attacks.
Rather, the accumulation of subretinal fluid in the macula results in metamorphopsia and blurring of vision.
If the patient reports that lines are missing (known as a scotoma) or appear wavy (known as metamorphopsia), the test is positive and prompt referral is indicated.
The different forms of geometries (Euclid and non-euclid-ones) are demonstrated in correlation to the visual mal-perception of MD-patients (metamorphopsia).
The early symptoms of macular disease include metamorphopsia (distortion of vision), micropsia, macropsia, and delayed recovery after exposure to bright lights (so that the headlights of oncoming cars may make night driving very difficult).
Referral will not provide a treatment and, unless rehabilitation using low vision aids is the desired outcome, the patient should remain in primary care with advice given regarding worsening symptoms such as sudden visual loss or metamorphopsia.
OCT showed normal foveal contour with remnants of ILM (Figure 6) seen over the macula with recovery of vision to 20/20 without any metamorphopsia or scotoma.