Dry and Wet Macular Degeneration
Both types destroy the clear, see-straight central vision that is needed for reading, driving, identifying faces, watching television and other daily activities.
Peripheral vision may not be affected. It may also be possible to see side views, in some cases.
About 90% of AMD cases are classified as dry Age-related Macular Degeneration(AMD).
Usually, AMD starts as the dry type, then can develop in one or both eyes. This process is slow and can advance over several years.
Many people do not even realize they have AMD, because early dry AMD usually has little to absolutely no symptoms.
Three Stages of Dry AMD:
- Early: In this stage, central vision is not affected. People in this stage may develop some small drusen (yellow deposits under the retina), but there is a low risk of it becoming advanced-dry AMD.
- Intermediate: In this stage, both the near and distance vision is affected. A person may have a blind spot or their central vision may be blurred. People with intermediate dry AMD are more likely to have many medium-sized drusen, or one or more large drusen.
- Advanced: In the advanced stage, cells in the macula lose their ability to function completely. A person’s sightline is completely blurred. Over time, vision will most likely worsen and tasks such as reading or recognizing faces becomes extremely difficult. Up to 43 percent of people in this stage of dry AMD will progress to wet AMD, the more aggressive form of the disease.
Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration is the most severe form of Age-Related Macular Denegation. Wet AMD can cause a sudden loss of vision within a short period of weeks or months.
In Wet AMD, abnormal blood vessels below the retina grow unexpectedly. These blood vessels break into the macula and cause blood and other fluids to leak.
Once wet AMD is presented in one eye, the chance of it developing in the second is greater.