Macular degeneration

Macular Degeneration is the leading cause of severe sight impairment in the over 60s age group and accounts for 250,000 people registered in the UK. It affects the central part of your retina called the macula which helps you to see detail, colour and read. Amongst the common causes are age, hereditary and genetic factors and smoking.

Macular Degeneration can be dry or wet. In the dry form, waste products accumulate in the retina as yellow deposits called drusen. It can also occur as thinned out patches in the retina termed as geographic atrophy. The wet form is due to the growth of new vessels which break through and bleed in the retina Symptoms of wet macular degeneration include seeing a large blurred central image such that faces of people may not appear to be clear or wavy lines whilst reading. These are the earliest signs and can be monitored with the help of an Amsler chart.

Ms Sandhu has set up a Rapid Access fast track Macular Degeneration clinic in her NHS practice where you can be seen and treated within a week of your symptoms. However, treatment for vision better than that permitted under the NICE guidance is not available. Therefore, private treatment in the early stages is the best option to preserve vision in Wet Macular Degeneration.

Ms Sandhu is Moorfields trained with a Fellowship in Medical Retina and a specialist research interest in Macular Degeneration. She offers the latest intravitreal injections including Lucentis, Eylea and Avastin to treat Wet Macular Degeneration.

Magnification or telescopic devices can be implanted in the eye surgically to help with loss of central vision. These either replace the lens as in cataract surgery or can be implanted in front of a pre-existing lens implant. Miss Sandhu can discuss the best treatment option best suited to your needs.

Useful links Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and The Macular Society