Macular Degeneration Awareness Month

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Written by Optometrist Megan Lafferty, contact us to book an appointment with Megan.

February marks Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Low Vision Awareness Month, a time dedicated to raising awareness about one of the world’s leading causes of vision loss. Nowadays, there are many organisations with a wealth of information and support for individuals with AMD and which showcase the latest modern innovative technologies being studied to treat this condition. By encouraging patient knowledge, promoting available rehabilitation resources and advancing research we can create a more optimistic future, where the impact of conditions such as macular degeneration can hopefully be reduced.

What is AMD?

AMD is a chronic eye condition that damages the macula (the most sensitive part of the retina at the back of the eye) responsible for clear central vision. Without central vision, everyday tasks such as reading, computer work and recognising faces can become extremely difficult or even impossible.
This prevalent condition affects a great deal of our population. Global estimates showed 196 million cases of AMD by 2020, with projections indicating an increase to 288 million by 2040.1 The consequences may also extend beyond the physical effects of vision loss as studies indicate a substantial impact on quality of life scores for those with AMD2. Now more than ever, offering emotional support has become crucial in helping individuals cope with this condition.

Treatment of AMD3

Quitting smoking stands out as one of the primary recommendations for managing and preventing AMD to help slow its progression. As well as smoking cessation, general lifestyle modifications such as maintaining a healthy diet rich in vitamins may help slow down the progression. In some cases of AMD, eye injections are required therefore it is important to seek medical attention straight away if AMD is present.

You May Not Know

Myopia can be associated with AMD. In particular, having high myopia (-6.00D) raises the risk of development significantly and is now termed Myopic Macular Degeneration.4 With the rate of myopia increasing at an alarming rate, especially in Singapore,5 it is necessary that we take the time to care for our eyes today to prevent eye diseases in the future for ourselves and our children

The Importance of Regular Eye Examinations

Regular eye examinations play a crucial role in maintaining overall eye health and are especially important in the early detection of conditions like Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Many people may not know they have AMD and having regular checks and timely intervention can significantly slow down the progression of AMD to help preserve vision. For those already diagnosed with AMD it is also essential to monitor the disease regularly for any changes/ progression.


As we delve into AMD Awareness Month, it is important to spread knowledge about one of the most prevalent eye conditions today. Through increased awareness, early detection and promotion of healthy lifestyle habits we can hopefully aim towards a future where the impact of AMD on individuals and communities is minimised. By supporting research and improving patient care protocols, we can make a meaningful difference on the lives of those affected by this debilitating condition.
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  1. W. L. Wong, X. Su, X. Li, C. M. G. Cheung, R. Klein, C-Y Cheng, T. Y. Wong. Global prevalence of age-related macular degeneration and disease burden projection for 2020 and 2040: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Epub (2014). doi:10.1016/S2214-109X(13)70145-1 (
  2. D. J. Taylor, A. E. Hobby, A. M. Binns, D. P. Crabb. How does age-related macular degeneration affect real-world visual ability and quality of life? A systematic review. BMJ Open (2016). doi:10.1136bmjopen-2016-011504. (
  3. A Stahl. The Diagnosis and Treatment of Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Dtsch Arztebl Int (2020). doi:10.3238/arztebl.2020.0513 (
  4. M. Zou, S. Wang, A. Chen, Z. Liu, C. A. Young, Y. Zhang, G.Jin, D. Zheng. Prevalence of myopic macular degeneration worldwide: a systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ Ophthalmology (2020). doi:10.1136/bmjophthalmol-2019-315298.(
  5. B. A. Holden, T. R. Fricke, D. A. Wilson, M. Jong, K. S. Naidoo, P. Sankaridurg, T. Y. Wong, T. J. Naduvilath, S. Resnikoff. Global Prevalence of Myopia and High Myopia and Temporal Trends from 2000 through 2050. Epub (2016) doi:10.1016/j.ophtha.2016.01.006 (
  6. T. Bedinghaus. Coping With Macular Degeneration. Very well health. (2022). (