AMD: Age-related macular degeneration affects 1.8 million Americans aged 50 years and older, and another 7.3 million are at substantial risk of vision loss from AMD, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Optometrists can educate patients about ways to reduce their risk for developing AMD, help diagnose patients before they experience severe vision loss, and refer patients for treatment or prescribe low vision aids. In this month’s “Docs Speak Out,” we ask about your recommendations and methods for managing patients at risk for or who have AMD.
WHAT RECOMMENDATIONS DO YOU OFFER PATIENTS TO REDUCE THEIR RISK OF DEVELOPING AMD OR FOR MANAGING EXISTING AMD?
“Quit smoking, eat dark green leafy vegetables, wear sun protection, maintain blood pressure, take MacuHealth supplement.”
“I like to put it into the simplest terms possible by saying something similar to ‘Anything good for your circulation is good for your AMD’ (i.e., diet, exercise, nutrition, etc.).”
“Dietary counseling, quit smoking and protection from UV. The hidden issue is the proper control of any essential hypertension and/or diabetes, which can complicate and mimic AMD.”
“Omega-3s, do not smoke, lifestyle changes (exercise/diet), supplements, blue light protection, Amsler grid home testing, schedule follow-up.”
“MacuHealth, omega-3 fatty acids, UV- and blue light-blocking lenses, hat or visor, dark green leafy veggies. Control body mass index, blood pressure and cholesterol. Eat a heart-healthy diet, oily fish twice a week. Exercise daily.”
“A good diet, exercise, lutein, zeaxanthin, omega-3 fatty acids, sunglasses, no smoking or alcohol, and blue blocker.”
“Low vision devices.”
“I discuss the importance of regular exercise, aiming for normal BMI, eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables (with emphasis on spinach and kale). I also make sure they understand the risks of smoking.”
”MacuHealth or AREDS, depending on genetic testing results. Blue-filtering lenses such as BluTech lenses. Foods high in lutein and zeaxanthin, such as dark green leafy vegetables, egg yolk, dark red and blue berries and orange peppers. I also recommend monitoring periodically depending on how advanced the AMD is. I also run a visual field 10-2 to evaluate central 10° of vision correlating to the macular region of the retina.”
“Eye Omega Advantage (physician-recommended neutraceuticals), Macular Vitamin Benefits (PRN also), UV protection, good diet, no smoking, Rx sunglasses.”