Skip to main content

“There is life after vision loss.”

Home » Low Vision » Low Vision Diseases

Low Vision Diseases

Macular Degeneration

AMD Examples book

Macular Degeneration is when you lose your central vision. You cannot see fine details, whether you are looking at something close or far. But your peripheral (side) vision will still be normal. For instance, imagine you are looking at a clock with hands. With AMD, you might see the clock’s numbers but not the hands.

AMD (Age Related Macular Degeneration) is very common. It is a leading cause of vision loss in people 50 years or older.

There are Two Types of AMD

Dry AMD

This form is quite common.

  • About 80% (8 out of 10) of people who have AMD have the dry form
  • Dry AMD is when parts of the macula get thinner with age and tiny clumps of protein called drusen grow.
  • You slowly lose central vision.
  • There is no way to treat dry AMD yet.

Wet AMD

This form is less common but much more serious.

  • Wet AMD is when new, abnormal blood vessels grow under the retina.
  • These vessels may leak blood or other fluids, causing scarring of the macula.
  • You lose vision faster with wet AMD than with dry AMD.

Many people don’t realize they have AMD until their vision is very blurry. This is why it is important to have regular visits to an ophthalmologist. He or she can look for early signs of AMD before you have any vision problems and refer you to a low vision specialist like Dr. Huggett.

Low Vision Treatments for Macular Degeneration

Click here to watch part 2!

Hemianopsia

Hemianopsia img

Hemianopsia is a debilitating visual condition that affects roughly 1 in 3 stroke patients. It can also be triggered by a brain injury or brain tumor. To the patient, it’s as if one side of their visual field simply disappears. To a layperson, this is hard to imagine, and even harder to explain. Patients with Hemianopsia have two major complaints related to this devastating condition: it’s hard to read, and it’s hard to get around without bumping into things (mobility).

Hemianopsia is also associated or maybe called: CVA, stroke, hemianopsia, hemianopia, quadranopsia, quadranopia, prism, peli lens, Gottlieb lens, visual field awareness system, Inwave, sector prism, nova vision, vision rehabilitation.

Low Vision Treatments for Hemianopsia

Glaucoma

glaucomaGlaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, the health of which is vital for good vision. This damage is often caused by an abnormally high pressure in your eye.

Glaucoma Treatment

Treatment of open-angle glaucoma — the most common form of the disease — requires lowering the eye’s pressure by increasing the drainage of aqueous humor fluid or decreasing the production of that fluid. Medications can accomplish both of these goals. Surgery and laser treatments are directed at improving the eye’s aqueous drainage.

If not diagnosed early, open-angle glaucoma may significantly damage vision and even cause blindness. That is why it’s so important to have your eye doctor test you regularly for glaucoma. Once diagnosed, glaucoma is usually controlled with eye drops that reduce eye pressure. Glaucoma is a life-long condition and needs continual follow-up with your eye doctor.

Low Vision Treatments for Glaucoma

Diabetic Retinopathy

diabetic retinopathyDiabetic retinopathy is a diabetes complication that affects eyes. It’s caused by damage to the blood vessels of the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye (retina). At first, diabetic retinopathy might cause no symptoms or only mild vision problems, but it can lead to blindness. The condition can develop in anyone who has type 1 or type 2 diabetes. The longer you have diabetes and the less controlled your blood sugar is, the more likely you are to develop this eye complication.

Diabetic Retinopathy Treatment

Your treatment will depend on what kind of retinopathy you have and how severe it is. Dr. Huggett and his team will work with you to maximize your remaining vision.

Controlling Blood Sugar

Controlling your blood sugar and blood pressure can stop vision loss. Carefully follow the diet your nutritionist has recommended. Take the medicine your diabetes doctor prescribed for you.

Medication

One type of medication is called anti-VEGF medication. These include Avastin, Eylea, and Lucentis. Anti-VEGF medication helps to reduce swelling of the macula, slowing vision loss and perhaps improving vision. This drug is given by injections (shots) in the eye. Steroid medicine is another option to reduce macular swelling. This is also given as injections in the eye. Your doctor will recommend how many medication injections you will need over time.

Laser surgery

Laser surgery might be used to help seal off leaking blood vessels. This can reduce swelling of the retina. Laser surgery can also help shrink blood vessels and prevent them from growing again. Sometimes more than one treatment is needed.

Low Vision Treatments for Diabetic Retinopathy

Adjust Text Size Normal Large Extra Large