Cones and rods are specialized receptor cells in the retina. Cones are specialized for color vision and detailed vision, such as for reading or identifying distant objects. Cones work best with bright light. The greatest concentration of cones is found in the macula and fovea at the center of the retina. The macula is the center of visual attention. The fovea is the site of visual acuity or best visual sharpness.
Wet macular degeneration, also referred to as advanced macular degeneration, is another type of macular degeneration. It occurs when abnormal blood vessels grow underneath of the macula. These new blood vessels are fragile. They may break and leak blood. The blood builds up and a mound of scar tissue develops that raises the macula from its normal position. Wet macular degeneration can cause severe rapid central vision loss.
Loss of central vision may occur rapidly with wet macular degeneration. A major symptom is distorted vision. Fine straight lines may appear wavy or crooked. It may be difficult to read or watch television. Your central vision may appear dim or absent. Wet macular degeneration can cause severe central vision loss, but the peripheral (side) vision usually remains intact.
Some cases of wet macular degeneration may be treated with laser therapy, photodynamic therapy, or medications. Laser surgery may be used to treat wet macular degeneration. Laser treatments are usually more effective in the early stages of the disease. Laser surgery uses high-energy light beams to destroy abnormal or leaking blood vessels.
There are a few medications that are injected into the eye to treat wet macular degeneration. They work to block the growth of new blood vessels that may leak and contribute to vision problems. The injected medications may help slow the progression of wet macular degeneration.
Am I at Risk
A family history of macular degeneration puts you at greater risk for the disease. Routine eye exams should start early.
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The iHealthSpot patient education library was written collaboratively by the iHealthSpot editorial team which includes Senior Medical Authors Dr. Mary Car-Blanchard, OTD/OTR/L and Valerie K. Clark, and the following editorial advisors: Steve Meadows, MD, Ernie F. Soto, DDS, Ronald J. Glatzer, MD, Jonathan Rosenberg, MD, Christopher M. Nolte, MD, David Applebaum, MD, Jonathan M. Tarrash, MD, and Paula Soto, RN/BSN. This content complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information. The library commenced development on September 1, 2005 with the latest update/addition on April 13th, 2016. For information on iHealthSpot’s other services including medical website design, visit www.iHealthSpot.com.