Gene Wyll, M.D.
Ophthalmologist, Surgeon and Contact Lens Specialist

Macular Degeneration

What is Macular Degeneration (AMD)?

The macula is the center part of the retina, which is the nerve layer in the back of the eye.  The macula is responsible for clear central vision.  Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a deterioration or breakdown of the macula.



    Normal Macula

    Early Stage of Macular Degeneration

What causes Macular Degeneration?

This disease is strongly associated with increasing age.  Other risk factors include heredity, smoking and high blood pressure.

What are the types of Macular Degeneration?

The most common type is dry macular degeneration in which the macula gradually ages and thins.  The less common type is wet macular degeneration, in which fluid or blood leakage develops under the macula.

Sometimes symptoms do occur and they may include:

Blurred central vision;
                Dark or empty spot in the central vision;
                Distortion or waviness of straight lines.


How is Macular Degeneration diagnosed?

Dr. Wyll will perform a dilated exam of the eyes and view the macula during your exam.  A grid test may be used to check for subtle distortion of vision.  Further specialized testing might be indicated during your exam.

How is Macular Degeneration treated?

There is no cure yet for dry macular degeneration.  There is some evidence that certain nutritional supplements may be helpful in preventing the progression of macular degeneration in certain situations.  The cessation of smoking may help slow the progression of macular degeneration.

Wet macular degeneration can be treated in certain situations with laser, photodynamic therapy, or injections, but such treatment decisions have to be made on an individual basis.

Visual aids may be helpful especially in improving reading vision.

610 North Coit, Suite 2115 Richardson, Texas 75080    Telephone 214-575-4455    Fax  972-918-0480

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