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MACULA DEGENERATION 020 7183 3725 Book a Consultation

Dry Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is an eye disorder common in people above 50 years. This eye condition occurs due to the macula becoming thin, resulting in reduced or blurred central vision. The macula is an area of the retina for precise vision.

Dry macular degeneration can occur in one eye or both simultaneously. It gradually causes vision to worsen, affecting the ability to carry out certain tasks, including reading, recognising people, and driving. However, the condition doesn’t cause complete vision loss and peripheral vision is usually unaffected.

Dry macular degeneration is mild for some people and usually progress slowly, causing only vision loss in the central view, but for others, the effect is more severe. Self care measures or early detection can delay vision loss resulting from dry macular degeneration.

Symptoms of dry macular degeneration

The symptoms of dry macular degeneration develop gradually without pain. These symptoms include:

  • Reduced middle vision in one eye or both
  • Visual distortion, including straight lines appearing bent
  • Printed words appear blurry
  • Reduced brightness or intensity of colours
  • Increased difficulty in adapting to levels of light, like when you enter a poorly lit room
  • Difficulty in recognising faces
  • Increased need for brighter light when carrying out close-up work or reading
  • A blind or significant blurry spot in the field of vision

Although this condition can affect both eyes, noticeable vision changes may not occur when it affects one eye because the vision in the good eye will cover for the diseased eye. Since the condition does not affect the side or peripheral vision, it rarely results in complete blindness.

Early detection and monitoring is very important in these conditions, please contact our specialist eye surgeons for consultation at Optimal vision tell 020 7183 3725.

Wet Macula Degeneration

Dry macular degeneration is a type of age-related macular degeneration. The condition can develop into neovascular or wet macular degeneration. This causes blood vessels to develop under your retina, causing blood to leak into the eye. Dry macular degeneration affects more people but gradually progresses over several years. Wet macular degeneration is likely to lead to a sudden change in your vision, causing a serious loss in vision. Now a days there are treatment available for wet macula including Anti VEGF injections (Eylea, Lucentis and Avastin injections) and laser treatment to avoid sudden loss of vision and treatment should not be delayed .

When should you see your doctor?

You need to see an eye doctor in the following situations.

  • If you experience any change in your central vision
  • If your notice a reduced ability to clearly see fine details and colours

These are the first changes most people over 60 notice when they experience macular degeneration.


The main cause of dry macular degeneration is still unknown, but research shows that the condition may be due to environmental and hereditary factors, including diet, obesity, and smoking.

The condition usually develops as ageing occurs in the eyes. Over time, the macular tissues become thin, and the cells that aid better vision gradually diminish.

Risk factors

Certain factors increase the risk of developing macular degeneration. These factors include:

  • Age

Macular degeneration is more common in those above 60 years

  • Genetics and family history

This condition is linked to hereditary factors, and research has found several genes related to the development of macular degeneration.

  • Smoking

Smoking and regular exposure to smoke can significantly increase the risk of developing macular degeneration.

  • Race

This condition usually affects Caucasians

  • Cardiovascular disease

People with any disease that affects the blood vessels and heart have a high risk of developing macular degeneration

  • Obesity

Studies have found that obesity may increase the risk of early and intermediate macular degeneration progressing to the severe condition


People with dry macular degeneration that has developed to cause vision loss in central view may become depressed and isolate themselves from social interactions. Falls are common in late stages due to poor vision. Visual hallucinations, also called Charles Bonnet Syndrome, may occur if the vision loss is significant. Rapid vision loss may occur when dry macular degeneration progresses to wet macular degeneration.


Visiting the eye specialist with advance screening technologies is important as it can identify the initial macular degeneration signs and help in early diagnosis and treatment. The following can reduce the risk of having dry macular degeneration.

  • Avoid smoking

Smokers have an increased risk of developing macular degeneration than people who do not smoke. You can ask your doctors for ways to help you quit smoking.

  • Manage other health conditions

People with high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease need to take the necessary medication and follow the doctor’s instructions to manage the condition and prevent complications like dry macular degeneration.

  • Have a healthy weight and stay active

If you are overweight, consider losing weight by reducing the number of your daily calories and exercising regularly.

  • Opt for a vegetable and fruit-dense diet

Opt for healthy meals with various vegetables and fruits. These foods are rich in antioxidants and can reduce the risk of macular degeneration.

  • Add fish to your diet

Fish contain omega-3 fatty acids, known to minimise the risk of developing macular degeneration. Other foods like nuts are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

  • There are some supplement tablets who can support you in case have dietary limitations.

If you experience symptoms of macular degeneration, like a sudden change in your vision, visit Optimal Vision for an eye exam and assessment by our experienced eye surgeon. You can also call 020 7183 3725 to book an appointment with us.

Dr Amir Mani - Specialist refractive surgeon

One of the most experienced refractive surgeons in London

Dr Mani has performed more than 20,000 ophthalmic procedures, including LASIK, LASEK, PRK, Femto Cataract, RLE, Lens ICL and Phakic IOL Surgery

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