Dr. DAVID MABERLEY PATIENT COMMUNICATION PORTAL
Diabetic retinopathy (also called diabetic eye disease) is a diabetes-related complication. It damages the blood vessels of the tissue at the back of the retina. There are two types of diabetic retinopathy: early diabetic retinopathy and advanced diabetic retinopathy. It usually affects both eyes, and anyone with type 1 or type 2 diabetes is at risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. The longer you have diabetes, the higher your risk of developing this condition.
As the leading cause of severe vision loss in people over 65, macular degeneration can affect near and distance vision. Macular degeneration occurs when the macula, which is the part of the retina (the light-sensing part of the eye) that’s responsible for central vision, is damaged or begins to break down. Your treatment depends on whether you have dry (atrophic) macular degeneration or wet (neovascular or exudative) macular degeneration.
Dr. David Maberley, MD, MSc. (Epid), FRCSC, Ophthalmologist: How Wet Macular Degeneration is Treated Compared to Dry Macular Degeneration
The dry macular degeneration form tends to be managed right now with antioxidant vitamins. And there’s a formulation that has been developed through the National Institute of Health in the United States.
It was a large, properly designed clinical trial that give us a recommendation for certain vitamins. And those vitamins are Vitamin C and E, zinc, usually with some copper supplementation, so you don’t get anemia with too much zinc, and then something called lutein or zeaxanthin, which are carotenoid chemicals that protect the macula.
So that formulation tends to be what’s recommended these days for patients with evidence of early macular degeneration, and really, the key thing here is that you need to have an ophthalmologist tell you that you have enough macular generation to go on the vitamins, and not just go on them on your own because you may or may not actually benefit from them.