Age Related Macular Degeneration

Wet and dry macular degeneration.

Wet is most severe but most treatable.

In dry macular degeneration:

  • Most common
  • Cells in the retinal pigment epithelium become thin and die
  • These cells are vital for the function of rods and cones

Wet Macular degeneration

  • Rarer – 1 in 10 cases
  • In addition to retinal pigment cells dying you get new vessel growth
  • These vessels are fragile and leak blood and fluid
  • causes visual loss over weeks/months – it can be sudden (hours) if there’s a sudden bleed


  • Ranibizumab (Lucentis) is a treatment for patients with certain types of macular degeneration
  • Given by 3 monthly intravetreal injection
  • Patients are monitored monthly
  • Works in 1/3 patients

Psychological support and low vision rehab is treatment for dry age-related macular degneration

Laser photocoagulation cannot be used in wet mac degeneration as there is reisk of severe visual loss from laser damage due to site of lesions.

High dose vitamin and mineral supplements (Vitamin C, E,beta-carotene (vita A), zinc and cupric oxide) and slow progression