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My 73-year-old father has been diagnosed with dry AMD. Should I start taking an AREDS supplement?

The studies show that people with significant dry age-related macular degeneration may have the progression to wet somewhat slowed by taking an AREDS supplement. No studies show that the onset of macular degeneration can be delayed by an AREDS supplement. Also, the inheritance of macular degeneration is complex and multifactorial and a family history is only one risk factor. I usually tell patients who are concerned about macular degeneration to not smoke, to use sunglasses, to control their blood pressure and blood lipids and to eat a healthy balanced diet with lots of vegetables. Taking an AREDS supplement won't hurt but the data doesn’t prove that it will help. Also, if you smoke cigarettes do not take beta carotene, which is in AREDS supplements.

Answered by: Gary Hirshfield, MDDr. Gary Hirshfield

Categories: General Eye HealthEye Diseases 

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Answered: Apr 16, 2013

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