Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration, often referred to as AMD, is a medical condition that usually affects older adults. This vision-stealing disease is the result of degeneration to the macula. It results in a loss of vision in the center of the visual field because of the damage to the retina. It occurs in dry and wet forms and is the leading cause of blindness and visual impairment in adults over the age of 50.

Types of Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration can make it difficult or impossible to read or recognize faces, although enough peripheral vision remains to allow other activities of daily life. The dry form of advanced AMD results from atrophy of the retinal pigment epithelial layer below the retina. This causes vision loss due to the damage of photoreceptors, also known as rods and cones, in the central part of the eye.

The wet form of advanced AMD causes vision loss due to abnormal blood vessel growth. This ultimately leads to blood and protein leakage below the macula. Bleeding, leaking, and scarring from these blood vessels eventually causes irreversible damage to the photoreceptors and rapid vision loss if left untreated. Fortunately, only about 10 percent of patients suffering from macular degeneration have the “wet” type.

Macular degeneration is not painful, which may allow it to go unnoticed for some time. For this reason, regular eye examinations are important. While approximately 10 percent of patients age 66 to 74 will have findings of macular degeneration, the prevalence increases to 30 percent for patients age 75 to 85 years of age. Family history may also play a factor. The good news is that regular eye exams, early detection, and new treatment options enable doctors to maintain (and in some cases increase) visual acuity in patients.

Watch our video to learn more!

We are pleased to announce that Olson Eye Care will be reopening for routine eye care on Monday, May 18th.

Patients will be asked pre-screening questions and masks are required for all patients and employees.

We are being diligent with disinfecting measures throughout the day in addition to following the protocols established by the Wisconsin Optometric Association.

All visits will be by appointment only.  This includes eyewear purchases, dispensing, adjustments, and repair. Please no walk-ins.

Our parking garage is closed so please park on the street (Commerce Dr.) near our front door.

Please contact us if you have any questions and we thank you for your understanding and support of our local business.

We look forward to seeing our patients and wish you all a safe and healthy spring.

Sincerely,

Dr Rick, Dr Angie, Dr Mary Ellen and the entire Olson Eye Care Team.