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Orsini Eye Center

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Age-Related Macular Degeneration

About Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is a retinal degenerative ailment that causes advanced loss of central vision. The risk of developing macular degeneration upsurges with age. The ailment most often affects individuals in their sixties and seventies. Macular degeneration is the most common reason of vision loss in individuals over the age of fifty. The macula is the central part of the retina accountable for perceiving fine visual detail. Light sensing cells in the macula, identified as photoreceptors, convert light into electrical impulses and then relocate these impulses to the brain through the optic nerve. Central vision loss from macular degeneration happens when photoreceptor cells in the macula degenerate.

Components that cause macular degeneration:

  • Age. This illness is basic in individuals more than 50

  • Family history and hereditary qualities

  • Macular degeneration is all the more regularly observed among the Caucasians

  • Smoking

  • Obesity

  • Cardiovascular infection



Dry macular degeneration side effects for the most part grow bit by bit and without torment. The manifestations may include:

Visual contortions, for example, straight lines appearing to be bowed
Reduced focal vision in one or the two eyes
The requirement for more brilliant light when perusing or doing close work
Increased trouble adjusting to low light levels, for example, when entering a faintly lit eatery
Increased fogginess of printed words
Decreased force or splendor of hues
Difficulty perceiving faces.

Prevalence of Macular Degeneration

As per the CDC report published recently apart from other deadly diseases, vision impairment is as well a serious health concern in the developing parts of the world. Precisely, only in US almost 2.9 million adult people are suffering from the vision loss. The report has suggested that approximately about 1.8 million non-institutionalized elderly report some or the other difficulty with basic activity such as bathing, dressing, walking, etc. just because of their visual impairment. National studies are indicating that the vision loss is associated with the higher prevalence of chronic health conditions, fall and injuries as well as depression and social isolation. The issue needs to be tackled carefully because some types of impairments can increase the risk of falls and fractures or if untreated for longer period of time, can also lead to blindness.


Stem cell treatment for AMD

Stem cell therapy provides great hope for curing degenerative eye diseases like dry AMD. The benefit of cell replacement therapies for AMD patients can be obtained through two possible avenues:

healthy transplanted cells can release factors that rejuvenate dysfunctional RPE and photoreceptors, or cell replacement can directly replace dysfunctional cells. Based on preclinical studies, the positive effects of stem cell transplants are likely a combination of both of these factors. 

Different than in the United States where stem cell transplants are still in clinic trial, in Japan, this practice has been regulated for some time now, in fact, there’s extensive regulation, specific licensing and certifications, and government mandated guidelines and best practices for the treatment of stem cell transplants for therapeutic purposes. Not every patient qualifies and not every illness can be treated with stem cells, there’s a thorough qualification process to determine eligibility and only a handful of certified stem cell clinics that are recognized by Japanese health authorities.

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