March is AMD Awareness Month

March 2, 2009
Ophthalmology Times Staff Reports

March is Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) Awareness Month, and the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), the American Society of Retina Specialists, the Macula Society, and the Retina Society have teamed up to encourage Americans to become more aware of their risks for AMD.

San Francisco

-March is Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) Awareness Month, and the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), the American Society of Retina Specialists, the Macula Society, and the Retina Society have teamed up to encourage Americans to become more aware of their risks for AMD.

Risk factors for AMD include having a family history of AMD; being aged 60 or more years; being overweight, hypertensive, or hypercholesterolemic; and being a smoker.

The Eye Smart Campaign, launched by the AAO and EyeCare America, recommends that adults with no signs or risk factors for AMD or other eye diseases have a baseline screening done at age 40. This is the age when the early signs of ocular disease and vision loss related to age may begin to become apparent. They also encourage all individuals, regardless of age, who have symptoms or risk factors for eye disease to see their ophthalmologists to determine the need and possibility of regularly scheduled screenings.

Early detection, careful monitoring, and prompt treatment are all critical pieces in the puzzle of AMD. Healthy lifestyle changes also can help patients who have AMD, according to the organizations. Decreasing exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light with UV-blocking glasses or hats, taking daily multivitamins, and eating fruits and dark-colored vegetables such as kale or spinach also may help reduce the risk of AMD, the groups said.

Related Content:

News