How Do You Test At Home for Macular Degeneration ?

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Dr. David Maberley, MD, MSc. (Epid), FRCSC, Ophthalmologist, discusses macular degeneration and home testing and monitoring.

Dr. David Maberley, MD, MSc. (Epid), FRCSC, Ophthalmologist, discusses macular degeneration and home testing and monitoring.

Video transcript

Featuring Dr. David Maberley, MD, MSc (Epid), FRCSC, Ophthalmologist

Duration: 1 minute, 45 seconds

Well the management of macular degeneration involves a few different steps. The first thing we can talk about once you’ve been diagnosed with macular degeneration is prevention.

And the easiest thing to do is, if you’re a smoker, is to do whatever you can to reduce your smoking and eliminate it. Because that’s a big trigger for a lot of macular degeneration. There may also be a role to wearing light protection for UV and bright light that wouldn’t hurt in the setting of macular degeneration.

Now there’s another piece in terms of early detection, and the early detection of macular degeneration is essential because the sooner a patient is diagnosed with the disease, especially in the form of wet macular degeneration, the sooner the treatment can be initiated, and the better the visual outcomes.

And there’s a number of ways you can test your eyes at home to be sure that you’re hopefully not developing macular degeneration that’s progressive. The first of those is called an Amsler grid, which is a grid paper, much like a piece of graph paper, that you can look at and look for areas where the lines start to become wobbly or distorted, or perhaps the lines are even missing.

And that’s a very simple test that you can even do. You can look for an Amsler grid on the Internet and find a version of that and test that on your own computer every day.

The second type of testing is a home monitoring device that are starting to become available throughout North America, where it’s almost like a small computer device you would keep at home, and it can help you to diagnose early macular degeneration as well.

Or simply just paying attention to your reading or any fine, detailed work you do with your eyes. If you start to lose letters when you’re reading or you notice lines, for example, straight lines, doorways, start to become bumpy or wobbly in the middle.

Those would be good signs to get your eyes examined to make sure that nothing’s going on.

Presenter: Dr. David Maberley, Ophthalmologist, Ottawa, ON

Local Practitioners: Ophthalmologist

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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