Age-Related Macular Degeneration also known as ARMD is a leading cause of legal blindness for people over 60 years old and affects approximately 15 million Americans. Of the 15 million, 1.7 million people experience serious visual impairment. It is estimated by the U.S. government that by 2020, 3 million Americans could be functionally blinded by ARMD.
ARMD does not just affect those who are over 60 years of age, early onset macular degeneration is a genetic disease that can set in somewhere between birth and age 7. Middle-onset macular degeneration can set in between ages 5 to 20. People in their 30’s and 40’s can also have an inherited form of this disease.
Myopic macular degeneration can occur in people who are severely nearsighted; this is due to the elongation of the eyeball. If the retina is stretched it can result in tears in the macula and even bleeding beneath the retina.