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Macular Degeneration Specialist

Neel  Lamba, MD, MBA -  - Ophthalmologist

Neel Lamba, MD, MBA

Ophthalmologist & Retina and Vitreous Specialist located in Wicker Park, Chicago, IL

Macular degeneration worsens over time, so you should book an appointment for an exam soon after you notice declining vision. Ophthalmologist Neel Lamba, MD, specializes in diagnosing and treating wet and dry macular degeneration at his practice in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois. If your vision doesn’t seem as clear as it usually is, call Neel Lamba, MD.

Macular Degeneration Q & A

What is macular degeneration?

Macular degeneration is a condition affecting the macula within your eye, which is the central portion of your retina. Your retina is a light-sensitive region of tissue in the back of your eye that allows you to perceive light, shadows, and color. 

Generally, macular degeneration gets worse as you age. While the disease usually doesn’t lead to total blindness, the vision difficulties resulting from macular degeneration can have a huge impact on your day-to-day life. Dr. Lamba works closely with you to make a prompt diagnosis and plan a treatment to preserve your clear vision. 

What are the early symptoms of macular degeneration?

The main symptom of macular degeneration is a decline in your central vision. Your peripheral vision, which is what you can see out of the sides of your eyes, remains mostly intact as the macula wears down. 

For a long time, you might not notice changes in your vision despite having macular degeneration. As the condition worsens, other possible symptoms include:

  • Straight lines appearing distorted
  • Needing more light to see clearly
  • Trouble with facial recognition
  • Vision blurriness or haziness
  • A dark spot in your visual field

During a routine eye exam, Dr. Lamba might notice additional signs of macular degeneration like retinal damage.  

Which type of macular degeneration do I have?

There are two main forms of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and Dr. Lamba walks you through your diagnosis before planning a treatment to restore your macula’s function. You might have:

Dry AMD

Dry AMD, the more common form, causes yellow spots called drusen to develop on your macula as you age. A small number of drusen might not affect your vision, but you start to lose your central vision as you develop more of them. 

Wet AMD

About 10% of cases of dry AMD develop into a more serious form called wet AMD. If you have wet AMD, abnormal blood vessels grow under your retina and leak blood and fluid into it. If the blood vessels form a scar, you can lose your vision entirely. 

What are my treatment options for macular degeneration?

For both types of macular degeneration, Dr. Lamba provides the newest available treatments, which can improve your vision and prevent you from losing more of it. After performing an examination to make a diagnosis, Dr. Lamba works with you to find the best course of treatment for you.

Based on your personal preferences and the details of your case, Dr. Lamba might recommend one or more of the following approaches:

  • Anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) drugs (e.g., Lucentis®, Eylea®)
  • Photodynamic laser therapy
  • Laser photocoagulation
  • Low vision rehabilitation or aid devices
  • Vitamin and mineral supplements (e.g., vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, zinc)

With wet AMD, you might need regular treatments because abnormal blood vessels can continue to appear even after you close them with laser therapy.

For more information about macular degeneration and how it affects your vision, call Neel Lamba, MD, for an appointment today.