My Dry Macular Degeneration

by Thomas
(Austin, Texas)

I was diagnosed with dry macular degeneration in 2007. My eye doctor put me on a vitamin program which includes: fish oil, Grape seed extract/Resveratrol, CoQ10, and high antioxidant multi vitamins.


In addition, I exercise on average 45 minutes per day.....many days up to 1.5 hours. My clarity of vision remains very good.

Unfortunately during the period since 2007 I have also experienced a vitreous detachment.

This has caused lots of bothersome floaters in both eyes. However, for the most part I am tolerating those. Overall I thank God I am not experiencing any distortion in my vision like I did initially. My recent eye exam showed I had 20/25 vision. I thank the Lord for that.

I will continue with the vitamin and exercise program.

The information provided by WebRN-Macular Degeneration.com has been very helpful and informative.

Thanks...Thomas J. Puryear
tj-carolyn@sbcglobal.net

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My Beginning Diagnosis of Macular Degeneration

by Raeann
(Minneola, Fl)

Just recently I was diagnosed with"the beginnings" of macular degeneration.

At first, I was mortified and then once I found WebRN-Macular Degeneration website I relaxed a bit. With all the valuable information pertaining to macular degeneration symptoms, foods recommended to eat, vitamins to take, and other websites to visit thru this site, my anxiety calmed a bit.

Now, I regularly watch for new treatments and new discoveries about AMD with just an open of my email.

Thanks again to this website, I appreciate the updates.

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My Journey with Dry AMD

by Pat N.
(Newmarket, ON, Canada)

I was diagnosed with dry macular degeneration 3 years ago when I was 59 years old. I take AREDS plus Omega 3 with Vitamin D, twice a day.

So far, my ophthalmologist says that my condition is stable. I read the tips from WebRN-Macular Degeneration.com regularly. This site really encouraged me because I was very fearful about the effect of decreased vision on my life. I have hope from knowing others have coped with this condition and found ways to enjoy life.

Thank you!

REPLY

Thank you Pat for your comments. It is good news to hear that your vision has remained stable.
For those of you who are wondering what AREDS is - it stands for the Age-Related Eye Disease Study. The National Eye Institute reports from the Age-Related Eye Disease Study that:
"taking high levels of antioxidants and zinc can reduce the risk of developing advanced age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by about 25 percent." and

"the AREDS formulation, while not a cure for AMD, may play a key role in helping people at high risk for developing advanced AMD keep their remaining vision."

Along with supplements it is important to realize that diet also plays an important role in our health and our vision. Learn more about a macular degeneration diet here:

Macular Degeneration Diet

Leslie Degner, RN, BSN

Better Health for Better Vision

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45 Y/O with Intermediate Macular Drusen

by Mike
(Birchbay, Wa USA)

Hi,

I am a 45 year old man (born 1964) who recently went for a standard eye examination becuse it seemed that my glasses where not working as they had. I also have been having problems with glare, and very poor night vision, to the point of near accidents while driving. Much to my surprise I was told I have many macular soft drusen in both eyes.

I was also told that an eye doctor who had seen me four years ago had seen it and noted it in my file, but did not tell me.

I was told this is usually seen in older adults and that it is likely a genetic conditon becuse of my age and family history.

The doctor advised me to make lifestyle changes - diet, antioxidants, exercise, and weight loss.

I am a non-smoker. My blood pressure is borderline, although now I will ask more questions when I visit the doctor!

I have found this site a great help so far and will continue to keep in touch with it.

I would be interested to know if there are people who at the same age who have been diagnosed with Intermediate Macular Drusen, whether or not it developed further, in what time span, and what the chances are of it stabilizing.

I would also like feedback on the possibility of reversing the drusen I have at this stage.

After the eye examination, I followed up with an appointment with an eye specialist, who has advised me to see him again in one year, and do a daily exam in both eyes and call immediately if I notice any changes.

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Jan 08, 2012
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Worried
by: Mike

I was told last August that I had intermediate dry MD. I'm a 45 year old male. I do not smoke but apparently my grandmother had the disease. Don't know much about it but have heard other talk and I am quite nervous.

Just noticed that the lines were not straight on the Amsler Grid I was given. Wondering if I should make another appointment with my optometrist in order to ask to see a specialist. I can be contacted at pmrush66@gmail.com

REPLY

Hello Worried,

Please call your eye doctor right away this morning so you can be seen. Let us know what transpires.

Leslie Degner, RN, BSN

Sep 17, 2011
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I'm 45 Female - Macular Degeneration
by: Kimberly

Hi Mike,

I have the same story as you.

If you want to talk more about it, feel free to email me at kimconana@gmail.com

This diagnosis is very puzzling to me!

Kimberly

Sep 01, 2009
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Macular Degeneration and Healing
by: Michael Edson, MS, L.Ac.

Macular degeneration is basically a disease of "starvation of the retina", meaning that essential nutrients are not getting to the retina to help maintain its integrity. In the case of dry macular degeneration, the ability of the eyes to completely absorb the natural waste created in the retina regularly is compromised, resulting in a build-up of waste in the retina called "drusen".

Lifestyle, diet and specific supplementation can help manage macular degeneration, even to the point of possibly reversing drusen.

Essential nutrients include the following: lutein, zeaxanthin, omega-3 fatty acids, taurine, gingko biloba, lycopene, vitamin A, E, zinc, copper, selenium for example, that can help both prevent the onset of eye disease such as macular degeneration as well as help preserve vision for those with macular degeneration.

For peer review research studies on nutrition and macular degeneration, see the "Research" section at Natural Eye Care

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Drusen - Recently Diagnosed

by Barbara

Hello,

I am a 57 yo woman (born 1952) who recently went for a standard eye examination. Much to my horror I was told I have two small drusen in one eye and one in the other.

I was told this is usually an early sign of macular degeneration. Since being advised of this, I have been making lifestyle changes - diet,(antioxidants) exercise, and trying to lose excess weight.

I am a non-smoker, although smoked for a while in my twenties. My blood pressure has always been 'good', although now I will ask more questions when I visit the doctor!

I have found this site a great help so far and will continue to keep in touch with it.

I would be interested to know if there are people who at the same age have been diagnosed with drusen, whether or not it developed further,in what time span, what the chances are of it stabilizing.

I would also like feedback on the possibility of reversing the drusen I have at this stage.

After the eye examination, I followed it up with an appointment with an eye specialist, who has advised me to see him again in one year.

I find it amazing that both the optometrist and the eye specialist did not bother talking much at all about the effects of diet, exercise/ lifestyle. Are they just not interested, not trained to do so, or just non-believers that this disease can be assisted in any way?

It makes sense to me that total health includes our eyes, as they are part of our bodies. Yes these 'professionals' seem to consider the eyes as a separate entity to the rest of our body!

Anyway, I would be most interested in any feedback from people who have been/are, in a similiar situation.

Thanks - Barbara

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May 26, 2013
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45 year old woman with early signs of macular degeneration
by: Anonymous

I went for a routine eye exam and my doctor noticed a " spot" on the back of my eye, after further testing, I was told that I have early signs of macular degeneration.

I am 45, average weight (size 6), never smoked, dark eyes, olive complexion, low cholesterol, low blood pressure, workout 4 hrs/week, eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, no known heredity issues and no more sun exposure than anyone else although I did sunbathe when I was younger and didn't wear sunglasses as much as I should have.

Most of the risk factors do not apply to me so I'm curious to know what I can do to prevent any further damage.

Oct 19, 2011
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Dry Macular Degeneration: Now you have it - Now you don't
by: Sue

I went to my optometrist in the UK nearly 2 years ago (age 61)for a routine eye test and was told I had dry macular degeneration.

I was told there was no cure, given an Amsler Grid and told to check it daily and advised vitamin supplements could help but not told which ones.

I was utterly devastated and when I picked myself up started checking the web and found this site which has helped and reassured me a lot.

I have been taking Visionace Plus and exercise a lot and have a healthy diet.

I was advised to go back for a check the following year and when I did so my optometrist was not there and the substitute examined me very carefully and said that there were one or two macular drusen but he did not consider they constituted a diagnosis of dry AMD at all!

I was of course delighted but am still taking the supplements. I had also notified my travel insurance company as it was on the list of notifiable conditions so then had to get the optometrist to send a letter to my GP and insurance company.

Tricky, as macular degeneration is not supposed to be curable! I shall await my next check with great interest - I now feel I am at risk as I have found out my mother had dry macular degeneration.

Apr 24, 2010
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Doctors Suggestions
by: Anonymous

I have to agree that I am getting a bit frustrated.

I have had 3 specialist tell me to watch my diet and exercise and take the vitamins. That's it, nothing else.

Not even a 15 minute summary of these are the studies that are occurring so that at least when you walk out of the doctors office there is some hope rather than the depression of no meaningful future when you walk out.

Oct 05, 2009
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Newly diagnosed
by: Anne

Hi,

I am a 54 year old female who was just told she has macular degeneration. I have been seeing the same opthalmologist annually for 8 years. She performed my Lasik surgery 7 years ago.

A year ago, I saw starbursts and a mini light show in my left eye one evening while riding in the car with my husband. I immediately called, went in and was examined, but never told anything other that if it were to happen again to call.

Seven months ago, I started seeing floaters in the same eye. Went in, examined, and told to come back in 6 months.

Two weekends ago, as I was reading the morning paper, I noticed my vision was a bit off. When I covered my right eye, I noticed a very slight blur just above center. When riding down the road and covering my right eye, electric lines would appear to be bent when seen through my left eye.

On Monday morning, I went in to see my opthlamologist and after an exam, she told me I had dry Macular degeneration.

No cure, no treatment, no definitive prognosis. She said she was sorry. That's it! She gave me an Amsler Grid to take home and said to check it daily and call if I noticed any additional changes.

I said I wanted a second opinion and her assistant was able to make an appointment for me with a Retinal specialist at the Duke Eye Center.

However, the soonest I can see her is October 20. I have been going crazy since then reading everything I can about this disease.

Two articles have stood out: one relating information about Professor John Marshall, who is with Royal College London, and his successful results using a soft pulsing laser treatment for dry AMD;

the second is Pfizer's backing of stem cell research for AMD, also taking place in London, England, that is also very promising and encouraging.

My question is why aren't these two treatments being explored here in the U.S.? I keep reading that we can look forward to a cure/treatment of our condition within 3-5 years. Why so long?

Is anyone else out there familiar with the Ellex 2RT laser research?

Aug 17, 2009
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Drusen/Nutrional and Lifestyle Elements
by: Anonymous

Hi Susan

I would be interested to know your experience of macular degeneration, whether it be yourself or someone close to you.

I think every bit of information we can gather, and the more awareness we can create, the more hope we have of improving this disease.

Regards
Barbara

Aug 17, 2009
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I Agree
by: Susan

I agree with your comments on nutrition - our food supply has become so depleted in nutrition that our bodies and eyes are experiencing less health because of it.

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Hearing the Word BLIND

by Margaret
(UK)

I was first diagnosed with macular degeneration ???? in 1999. Yes, I had no idea what it meant. I could still see properly (so I thought).

When I went to the eye clinic the Dr told me he could use laser to treat the eye and when I asked him when I would have an appointment to have it done, he said straight away.

I thought WoooAH that's a bit quick, and on seeing my concern I was taken through to see the Eye Specialist in that Hospital. He said " I believe Dr ---- recommends you to have the laser treatment, and on seeing the look on his face I asked " what do you recommend?" to which he shook his head and said 'NO'.

I kept going back to this Hospital every 6 months and in that time after doing research and new technology coming along I found quite a lot about AMD.

I had the dry AMD in the right eye and the colour had gone(mostly everything was grey).

Back on the Internet once again and found some Chinese face exercises which after about 2 weeks would you believe, I had colour back again.

After having all the relevant tests possible I was sent to another Hospital in 2009. There were dozens of people there waiting to have injections for WET AMD. Believe me I was very nervous.

When I went in to see the Dr and going through the examination, she sat back in her chair, and I'll never forget her saying " There's nothing we can do for you, you'll go blind". I just got up off the chair and walked out. I could not believe that a 'medical person' could be so inhuman in manner.

Still keeping up appointments in this Hospital on a regular basis I was told in 2011 that I had retinal pucker in the eye and would I like to see a retinal specialist, which I did.

Well, what a lovely man. He had all my notes re: everything that had been done, but would not do anything until I'd had the angiogram, after which I'd have to come back and see another Specialist, due to him being away at the time.

When I saw this Dr he said I did not have dry macular in the right eye but a macular pucker, which could be operated on. Having had this problem for a few years now, I was concerned (could he be wrong, which was my impression). I asked to see the other Specialist first before anything would be done. It sounded too good to be true.

At my appointment with this specialist, he said I had Dr AMD and a macular pucker. They could operate on the puckering but it would not cure the DRY AMD. I was given the odds on the success of this operation and we concluded that it was not worth the risk at this time.

I explained to him my initial meeting with the 'lovely lady Dr' who said I would go blind. He said I would not go blind, but central vision would be impaired.

I have it starting in my left eye as well. I only hope it takes as long as the right eye to occur.

You know, it's amazing how many advancements there are on info. on this condition, mainly a lot through your website, of which I am a faithful member.

There are also vitamins that you can take to help keep this at bay for a while.

My advice, get the best Doctor. I know they are busy, but you can tell when a Doctor has the time to listen to you.

I am still able to do my art and crafts, also I do love my photography.

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