Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is just one of the eye ailments that can adversely impact quality of life. In a bid to help people do everything in their power to keep their eyes healthy, eye surgeon Dr. Keiki Mehta gave some tips in a recent edition of The Times of India.
According to the article, the Dr. Mehta said that it’s important that people safeguard their eyes from the sun. Using sunglasses that provide sufficient protection is necessary because they help to shied the eyes from harmful ultraviolet light rays, particularly UV-B. The article noted that UV-B can lead to problems such as AMD, cataracts and corneal changes. While sunglasses are important to protect the eyes, not all sunglasses are equal. This means that people need to specifically look for sunglasses that provide UV protection.
Dr. Mehta added that it’s important to get routine eye checkups. While people tend to be willing to look after their vehicles at recommended service intervals, the doctor explained that many people are not as serious when it comes to ensuring that their eyes are in tip top shape. And eye checkup, said Dr. Mehta, involves an exam to see whether or not there are any issues.
According to the article, the doctor added that people should avoid straining their eyes while they read. This means ensuring that the books they read are properly lit. In a best case scenario, the light would come over the reader’s left shoulder, said the doctor.
Dr. Mehta said in the article that people who want to safeguard their eye health should steer clear of smoking cigarettes since lighting up can boost the odds of getting AMD. People who both smoke and drink, said the doctor, can also increase their risks of getting optic nerve disorders. So those who smoke should stop and those who don’t should keep it up.
Among other things, Dr. Mehta also said that consuming antioxidant-rich foods can also promote proper eye health. For instance, Vitamin A, zeaxanthin, lutein and Omega-3 fatty acids can help people either to lower their odds of getting AMD or to slow down the progression of the disease.
This article is brought to you by PreserveMacForte.com.
As more people develop macular degeneration, scientists continue research to figure out still unknown causes and remedies. This dangerous disease that could lead to blindness has no cure, but in a high percentage of cases, can be slowed through macular degeneration eye vitamins and supplements.
New research has emerged showing the beginning of potential genetic markers that could be detected prior to development. Also, there is a recent cell reprogramming study that is showing promise in possibly reversing damaged neurons causing macular degeneration and other eye related diseases such as glaucoma.
Genetics and Diet, Down the Line
Everyone’s family history comes with a long list of potential diseases, presented down the line over time that someone inevitably gets the genome for. Current testing may be able to detect some of these genomes that are turned on like a switch, predisposed to cause cellular havoc, a Trojan Horse occupying from within.
In some cases, when a genome is positively detected measures could be taken on how to address approaching this unpredictable “switch” and possibly preventing future illness. Now it looks like eye diseases, such as macular degeneration, may show in genes as well beyond some basics which have already been discovered such as the obvious reported by the West Valley News, Sun City, AZ,
“Vitreoretinal specialist Dr. Mandi D. Conway with Arizona Retinal Specialists in Sun City West said caucasians have a genetic disposition to macular degeneration. In contrast, Hispanics, Native Americans, African Americans or Asians have a lower risk.”
In a study by researchers in Boston, Massachusetts published in Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science it was concluded that the genome that is associated with decreased HDL (high-density lipoprotein, also called “good” cholesterol), is also inversely associated with the risk of developing advanced AMD (age-related macular degeneration).
Although there can also be a hereditary link to high cholesterol, it may be possible to reverse AMD simply through a healthy diet and exercise program.
Dr. Conway adds,
“…diet may play an important role in getting macular degeneration. Based on studies, some believe that fatty acids on the liver that metabolize have an affect on the retina.”
Nudging Cells Back to Life, Just Like Zebrafish
It is always a great realization when the work of dedicated scientists shows such advanced research that they can actually help the body when it cannot help itself.
This could be the case regarding a new study where lead researcher Bo Chen, an associate professor of ophthalmology at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, CT, looked at the retinal neurons in zebrafish. It turns out that these and other cold-blooded creatures are able to rely on built in retinal neuron stem cells to regenerate lost, damaged, or old cells with new ones.
Mammals, on the other hand, can only do this in the case of injury otherwise the same capability remains dormant even in the case of such eye diseases as glaucoma and macular degeneration. In fact, laboratory testing tried to purposely damage these dormant nerve cells into production which didn’t work and resulted in nerve death.
Now, professor Chen’s study has shown promise in regeneration of retinal neurons in laboratory rodents which may soon be applied to humans.
The study was published in Cell Reports (9/16). Medical News Today states,
“Using cell reprogramming techniques, scientists have managed to induce support cells in the retina to become stem cells capable of making new neurons. They suggest the technique could lead to new treatments for glaucoma, macular degeneration, and other eye diseases where retinal neurons are lost.”
Professor Chen comments,
“In the future we are hoping to manipulate these cells to replenish any lost retinal neurons, either in diseased or physically damaged retinas. Potentially, it’s a therapy to treat many different retinal degenerative diseases.”
So genetics and cell reprogramming are two ways that the future of eye health may result in macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts and so many more debilitating diseases being a thing of the past. However, you may not need to wait until the far off future to benefit from this research as in some cases, it is currently being applied in human lab trials. This is just another testament to the ever changing and rapidly moving benefits of science.
Wireless technology may have just made its way into the eyes of glaucoma patients. With glaucoma still a prominent visual disease today, advancement in any technology is welcomed. According to the Glaucoma Foundation it is estimated that over 2.2 million people are challenged by glaucoma and only about half have been diagnosed. In addition, approximately 1 in 10,000 babies are born with this disease. One of the newest additions to the fight against glaucoma is a pressure gauge optical implant. This device may prevent blindness, a result from this disease that the world Health Organization (WHO) has cited as the second leading cause of blindness in the world.
Pressure – Glaucoma is currently incurable. It is the result of optical fluid not being able to sufficiently drain and in turn builds up pressure that can damage the optic nerve. The National Eye Institute explains this process, “In open-angle glaucoma, even though the drainage angle is “open”, the fluid passes too slowly through the meshwork drain. Since the fluid builds up, the internal optic pressure [IOP] inside the eye rises to a level that may damage the optic nerve. When the optic nerve is damaged from increased pressure, open-angle glaucoma-and vision loss—may result. That’s why controlling pressure inside the eye is important.” Once the optic nerve is damaged vision loss and possibly blindness can ensue. The most dangerous aspect of this happening is that the person afflicted may not even know it, until it’s too late.
Stopping Pressure in Its Tracks – By implanting a miniature pressure gauge device, glaucoma sufferers could have their pressure readings easily checked. Some designs work with a smartphone camera while others wirelessly send information to their doctor as well as the patient themselves. The wireless device allows the doctor to receive the pressure readouts sent directly into a specifically designed database complete with individualized warnings according to each patient’s specific glaucoma challenge. The patient receives their pressure readings via a downloaded app that converts the information into easily decipherable layman’s terms. This type of technology creates an immediate response and repair protocol that reduces eye pressure. By such swift capability doctor’s visits are reduced and vision longevity could be restored to an aging population where it was never able before.
Coming Soon – The new technology is being tested and designed by a variety of researchers in the field. Each design works along the same lines, focusing on the dangers of undetectable increased optical pressure. There is the German company, Implandata Opthalmic Products GmbH which announced the advancement of their Pro-IOP eye measurement system. Another, designed by Stanford University’s Prof. Stephen Quake, and ophthalmologist Yossi Mandel of Bar-Ilan University in Israel is being further tested and ultimately released. The technology is expected to enter the market sometime in 2015 or 2016 which makes it a palpable tool that would otherwise require many years before being implemented into the general population.
The Working Parts – As mentioned, each design varies regarding the implantation for each. This depends on the individual and their doctor’s advice. Some describe it as being akin to a Lasik surgery procedure while others are “designed to go inside a standard intraocular lens prosthetic, which many glaucoma patients end up getting as a result of cataract surgery.” (GizMag). The results from preliminary testing looks good with Stanford News reporting that, “…in one previous study, researchers found that 24-hour IOP monitoring resulted in a change in treatment in up to 80 percent of patients.” In addition, the implant has been shown to have little to no distortion when evaluated by the U.S. Air Force vision test.
Glaucoma optical implant technology is a continued cutting edge advancement in keeping yet another incurable disease at bay. It is an exciting breakthrough that proves the digital world isn’t so bad after all, that is until they decide to start scrolling advertising across the lens but let’s hope that doesn’t happen.Sources: http://www.glaucoma.org/glaucoma/glaucoma-facts-and-stats.php http://www.gizmag.com/glaucoma-iop-eye-implant/33562/ http://www.nei.nih.gov/health/glaucoma/glaucoma_facts.asp http://news.stanford.edu/news/2014/august/eye-implant-glaucoma-082514.html http://www.ntd.tv/en/news/life/20140804/183959-optical-implant-could-revolutionize-glaucoma-management.html
The developer of the first Fluid Based Accommodating Intraocular Lens called FluidVison has taken on a maverick of ophthalmology. Dr. Douglas D. Koch, Harvard grad, the Allen, Mosbacher, Law Chair of Ophthalmology, and Professor of Ophthalmology, at Baylor College of Medicine joins PowerVision. With three million people suffering from cataracts each year, one of several conditions FluidVision addresses, bringing Dr. Koch onto PowerVision’s Scientific Advisory Board continues to maintain high standards for PowerVisions mission statement, “…to provide a family of fluid-based lens implants that meet the clinical and lifestyle needs caused by these conditions, and develop the most significant innovation in vision correction surgery since the introduction of the intraocular lens.”
FluidVison is designed to “permanently restore clear vision at all distances for patients with cataracts and presbyopia.” Dr. Koch explains, “Many people still carry reading glasses post-surgery, since current procedures have yet to provide adequate visual clarity at all distances. The FluidVision lens addresses the other half of vision impairment problems, and will alleviate a source of frustration for my future patients. I’m excited and extremely happy to play a role in the development of a truly groundbreaking technology that can revolutionize the capabilities of intraocular lenses.”
Traditional intraocular lens implants are the current procedure to assist cataract sufferers in seeing long distances however corrective lenses are often needed. FluidVision uses True Accommodation™, which was coined due to its ability to change the shape and adjust the focus of a healthy eye. In essence it is “accommodating” to the preventative measures needed to be taken regarding the development of cataracts. With FluidVision corrective lenses should not be needed. Positive studies continue with one recently presented in April at the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (ASCRS) Annual Symposium. The study revealed, “patients who received the FluidVision lens in one eye during cataract surgery [who] had impressive results of 20/33, 20/25 and 20/20 respectively for near, intermediate, and distance vision.”
The two main optical challenges that FluidVision will address are presbyopia and cataracts. Presbyopia is the slow degeneration of the eye’s crystalline lens. The lens loses its flexibility and therefore creates difficulty for the patient to see close objects. For many it presents as occurring rapidly when it is actually a slow progression that manifests when one is in their forties. Presbyopia is a condition, not a disease. Cataracts are when part of the eye lens becomes foggy creating difficulty seeing clearly. It can occur when one is in their mid-50’s or older but minimal cases have also been seen in infants and children. If the cataract becomes too obstructive, surgery is the only option which requires removal of the lens and replacing it with an artificial one.
FluidVision is getting closer to market everyday. With Dr. Koch joining the advisory team hopefully it will soon go from investigative device to a full on application that can help those struggling with optical challenges.Source: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/2067113
Red peppers are not only useful for adding to salads or dishes, but also helpful for fighting diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), according to NDTV Cooks.
According to the article, the produce is an ideal source for lycopene, the red-colored carotenoid pigment. The article noted that some studies show that consuming foods containing lycopene can lower the odds of getting certain kinds of cancers. Moreover, some studies reveal that foods with lycopene and other cartenoids — zeaxanthin and lutein — can help to protect the retina, which in turn could help to ward off AMD. AMD, an eye ailment that generally only impacts the elderly population, damages central vision but leaves peripheral vision intact.
Red peppers, in addition to being loaded with lycopene, are also high in vitamin B6, otherwise known as pyridoxine, which helps with regards to brain function. The vegetable also has vitamins A and C.
According to the article, the elongated red peppers are tastier and healthier than are the bell-shaped kinds.
Meanwhile, various reports have noted that early diagnosis can greatly increase the odds of slowing down the progression of age related macular degeneration. There is no cure for the eye disease, but there are treatments that offer varying levels of improvement. People who go in for routine eye exams are more likely than those who don’t to have a wider range of treatment options available. However, those whose AMD condition is diagnosed too late may have few if any treatment options at their disposal. In such cases, vision loss might not be reversible. People who have a family history of AMD should be particularly diligent when it comes to regular eye care since they are more likely than those who do not have a family history of AMD to be diagnosed with the condition.
While AMD usually only impacts baby boomers and mature seniors, getting older need not necessarily include experiencing the eye disease that can make it hard or impossible to drive, read, watch TV, or even recognize the faces of friends or family. Going in for regular exams, exercising daily, steering clear of cigarettes and maintaining a healthy weight may lower your odds of suffering from age related macular degeneration.
(www.PreserveMacForte.com) Oil fish, which contains plentiful amounts of omega 3 fatty acids, could be helpful in helping to keep intact the eyesight of older people, according to TeleManagement recently.
The article noted that a new study has demonstrated that omega 3 fatty acids contained in oily fish could help the elderly to ward off eye disease such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Earlier research has also found that omega 3 fatty acids can cut AMD risks.
According to the article, researchers in Europe found that consuming oily fish at least once every week could lower the odds of getting AMD, which is the leading cause of vision loss and eyesight impairment.
The article noted that the National Eye Institute notes that there are two kinds of AMD, namely dry AMD and wet AMD. The more common and less serious of the two is dry AMD. Dry AMD occurs when light-sensitive cells located in the macula degenerate and adversely impact central vision. However, people with dry AMD can eventually come down with wet AMD, which can lead to blindness. Wet AMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels leak blood and other liquid that damage the macula. Only about 10% of people diagnosed with dry AMD go on to get wet AMD. The article added that women appear to be more likely to get AMD than are men. Other risk factors include smoking, obesity and family history.
According to the article, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) researchers and their colleagues located in seven European nations mulled over the association between oily fish consumption and omega 3 fatty acids in the wet form of AMD. The researchers looked at the eating habits of people who took part in the study.
The researchers found that people who consume fish at least one time every week lessen their odds of getting wet AMD by 50%. Specifically, people who took part in the study were asked about their consumption of food containing omega 3 fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). According t the report, people who consume in excess of 300 mg of EPA and DHA were 70% less likely to come down with wet AMD.
AMD is the primary cause of vision loss in people older than 55 years old in the U.S. The condition generally only impacts the older segment of the population. This does not mean, however, that AMD is unavoidable.
(PreserveMacForte.com) Oraya Therapy Stereotactic Radiotherapy, used to treat wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD), has been rolled out at Optegra Manchester Eye Hospital, reported The Herald Online recently.
According to the article, the development now means that Optegra Manchester Eye Hospital is the second facility situated in the United Kingdom to offer the therapy. The article noted that the Oraya Therapy, which is non-invasive, is a one-time outpatient treatment to lessen the requirement for ongoing anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) injections directly in the eye.
Around the world, wet AMD is the primary cause of vision impairment among people who are older than 65 years old. In the UK, meanwhile, wet AMD adversely impacts about 260,000 persons and an article from the British Journal of Ophthalmology notes that close to 40,000 new patients will be diagnosed with wet AMD each year. While anti-VEGF injections have helped to prevent millions of people around the world from going blind, the treatment is costly and uncomfortable, according to the article.
Sajjad Mahmood, consultant ophthalmologist at Optegra Manchester Eye Hospital, said in the article that Oraya Therapy will help patients to keep their vision while cutting down on the “need for injections.”
The article explained that Oraya Therapy’s effectiveness has been shown in the INTREPID study. The study achieved its main endpoint by increasing the period of time between anti-VEGF injections injections by 32% for treated patients compared to the control group. According to the article, the INTREPID study shows that anti-VEGF injections was able to lessen anti-VEGF injections by up to 55%.
Professor Tariq Aslam, consultant ophthalmologist at Optegra Manchester Eye Hospital, said in the article that “it’s extremely gratifying that” Oraya Therapy is now available to help patients living with wet AMD.
There are two types of AMD, wet and dry. Only about 10% of those who get dry AMD end up getting wet AMD, which is the more serious of the two conditions. Wet AMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels leak blood and other fluid that damages the macula. If diagnosed soon enough, eye doctors can employ different treatment options to help people cope with wet AMD. There is, however, no cure for the disease.
In May of 2013, the National Eye Institute reported their findings from the 5 year follow up study to AREDS called AREDS 2. The original AREDS study found that when AMD patients added daily supplements into their diet with high doses of antioxidants and zinc it helped slow the progression of dry age related macular degeneration and reduced their risk of vision loss.
AREDS 2 looked at several factors trying to improve the formulation and efficacy of the AREDS formula, which originally found that specific quantities of vitamins C & E, beta-carotene, zinc, and copper were beneficial in slowing the progression of the eye disease. AREDS 2 researched different combinations and different quantities of some of the original items studied in AREDS. AREDS 2 also studied the effects of lutein, zeaxanthin, and Omega-3 fatty acids on the progression of age related macular degeneration.
In summary, AREDS 2 found no benefits from Omega-3 fatty acids in reducing the risk of vision loss from AMD, however, lutein and zeaxanthin were found beneficial and slowed the progression in people that had low levels of these antioxidants in their daily diets and with participants who took a beta-carotene free AREDS formulation in addition to lutein and zeaxanthin.
Based on this “gold standard” information from the National Eye Institute, Preserve Mac Forte was reformulated in December of 2013. The latest formulation of our product is called Preserve Mac Forte Advanced and is the only product available now. It replaces the original Preserve Mac Forte and also Preserve Mac (the smoker’s formulation).
This new and improved “advanced” formulation is still referred to as Preserve Mac Forte, and it is now beta-carotene free (which makes it safe for smokers). It also contains a full 2 mg of zeaxanthin as suggested by the findings in AREDS 2 by the National Eye Institute.
Brian Williams from NBC Nightly News shares Dr. Nancy Snyderman’s report on this surgically implanted miniature telescope to help restore vision in patients suffering from age related macular degeneration. This is not a cure, but a navigation tool and requires significant therapy once the surgery is completed.
(http://www.PreserveMacForte.com) Long recognized as a bad habit that can lead to lung cancer, smoking can also lead to eye ailments such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), reported Tribune Interactive.
According to the article, smoking boosts the odds of being diagnosed with the eye condition that destroys central vision while leaving peripheral vision intact. Studies have demonstrated that smokers are two to four times more likely to get AMD than are people who have never used a cigarette. The more people smoke, the more they are likely to come down with AMD. Researchers have also discovered that people who don’t smoke but who are often in the same environment as people who do light are at a heightened risk of getting AMD than are those who neither smoke nor are exposed to second-hand smoke.
According to the article, AMD occurs when the macula, which is the portion of the retina responsible for central vision, deteriorates. The article added that many experts are of the opinion that smoking leads to AMD by hindering the way of blood flow to the retina.
According to the article, cigarette smoke contains up to 4,000 harmful active compounds that include heavy metals, tar, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.
AMD is not the only eye condition that can be caused by smoking. Smokers also have double the risk of coming down with cataracts compared to people who do not smoke. Heavy smokers, meanwhile, are three times more likely than non-smokers to get AMD.
Previous reports have noted that giving up smoking is one of the most important lifestyle changes to implement. It’s also important to keep cholesterol in check, avoid hypertension, steer clear of obesity, exercise every day and eat lots of leafy green produce. Taking these sorts of precautions will greatly lower the odds of getting AMD or slow down the progression of the ailment. In fact, the sooner the condition is diagnosed, the more treatment options will be on the table. Late diagnosis, meanwhile, can lead to permanent vision loss since there are fewer treatment options at the disposal of the eye doctor.