Macular Degeneration Specialist

Retina Eye Specialists

Raghu C Murthy, MD

Ophthalmology & Retina Specialist located in Beverly Hills, CA & South Pasadena, CA

Macular degeneration is an age-related eye disease that damages your central vision. At Retina Eye Specialists, in South Pasadena and Beverly Hills, California, Raghu Murthy, MD, FACS, and his team offer expert diagnosis and treatment for macular degeneration to protect your eye health and vision. If you’re concerned about macular degeneration or your eye health, call either office or make an appointment online today.

Macular Degeneration Q & A

What is macular degeneration?

The macula is the part of your retina that controls your central vision. Macular degeneration is a condition that damages your macula and impairs your vision.

Macular degeneration tends to develop slowly, and you might not notice any symptoms in the early stages of the disease. Over time, macular degeneration reduces your ability to see fine details in front of you, but your peripheral vision remains normal. 

What causes macular degeneration?

There are two types of macular degeneration: wet and dry. 

Dry macular degeneration is the more prevalent type of the disease, accounting for around 80% of macular degeneration diagnoses. Dry macular degeneration develops when your macula thins with age and clumps of proteins known as drusen develop. 

Wet macular degeneration is a more severe type of the disease. It develops when abnormal blood vessels grow beneath your retina, and the vessels leak blood and other fluids. The blood can scar your macula and cause more rapid vision deterioration. 

Your risk of macular degeneration increases if you have a family history of the disease. Other risk factors include:

  • Hypertension
  • High-fat diet
  • Smoking
  • Obesity

Macular degeneration is age-related, so your chances of developing the disease get higher as you age.

How is macular degeneration diagnosed?

Dr. Murthy checks your macula when you have your annual eye exam. If he is concerned about your central vision, they may use an Amsler grid to assess your central vision. He may order additional tests such as fluorescein or indocyanine green angiography, or optical coherence tomography. 

How is macular degeneration treated?

Unfortunately, there’s no cure for dry macular degeneration. Dr. Murthy may recommend adding vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients to your diet to slow the progression of the disease, including:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Lutein
  • Zeaxanthin
  • Zinc 
  • Copper

However, if you have wet macular degeneration, Dr. Murthy can prescribe treatment to slow or stop the disease. Anti-VEGF injections reduce the number of abnormal blood vessels in your eye, both preventing new blood vessels from forming and sealing and closing existing irregular blood vessels.

The injections are delivered directly into your eye. While this sounds frightening, Dr. Murthy provides numbing eye drops to ensure you stay comfortable during the injection. 

The team at Retina Eye Specialists also offers laser treatments to get rid of the abnormal blood vessels associated with wet macular degeneration. 

Call Retina Eye Specialists or make an appointment online for expert diagnosis and treatment for macular degeneration.