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Question:
My mother has macular degeneration and is receiving the injections for it. What is her long-term prognosis? Will she be able to keep the vision she has now... will she eventually go blind? I read recently about a new implant technology using a "scope." I'm looking for factual information in how I can better help her save the sight she has now and in the future.

Answer:
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a disease that has several new treatments. The prognosis is guarded since there is no cure, but the new treatments today, including anti-VEGF agents like Avastin and Lucentis are better than past treatments; they help to decrease vision loss and sometimes can help regain vision. Long-term treatment is typically needed. There is a risk of blindness and legal blindness, but even if patients become legally blind, they can still benefit from vision rehabilitation and can still carry on very functional lives. The most important point is to continue follow up with the ophthalmologist to treat and monitor the AMD. There is an implantable "telescope" lens that may help some patients and may be available to the public soon. It is also important to take the AREDS formula vitamins that have been shown to reduce the rate of exudative AMD in the fellow eye. 

Answered by: Abdhish Bhavsar, MDDr. Abdhish Bhavsar

Categories: Eye Diseases, Eye Conditions

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Answered: Nov 23, 2010

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