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A female asked:

can dry macular degeneration turn into the wet form? i've read that it sometimes happens, but it doesn't make sense to me. don't the two forms of macular degeneration have different causes?

4 doctor answers12 doctors weighed in
Dr. Martin Pourkesali
Ophthalmology 24 years experience
Dry : Dry macular degeneration can become wet when abnormal blood vessels start to form in the same area. Since these blood vessels do not behave normally like other blood vessels, they can leak fluids or red blood cells in surrounding tissue, hence the name "wet" macular degeneration can form.
Dr. Matthew Rauen
Ophthalmology 15 years experience
"Dry" : "dry" macular degeneration can become "wet" at any point. Often this is encourntered when there is a drop in vision. Should someone with "dry" macular degeneration ever experience a drop in vision, a trip to the eye doctor is important as we now have more advanced treatments for "wet" macular degeneration. There are a subset of patients with "dry" macular degeneration who benefit from areds vitamins. Any patient with "dry" macular degeneration should ask their doctor if they qualify for use of these. In my experience these eye vitamins are very much over-prescribed given the current studies that exist. Eye doctors are looking forward to the studies that will come down the pipeline in the future regarding vitamins and macular degeneration.
Dr. Theodore Leng
Ophthalmology 16 years experience
Yes, : Yes, the dry from can become the wet form. As far as we know, the two forms do not have difference causes. The risk of macular degeneration is based on your age, your ethnicity, your smoking history, your sex, and your genetic makeup (among other factors). Most of the time, one develops the dry form first and then there is a possibility of converting to the wet form at a future date.
Dr. Robert Janigian
Ophthalmology 33 years experience
Macular degeneration: Nearly everyone who has wet amd initially had the dry form. There is definitely a progression from the dry type to the wet type. This is why high dose antioxidant vitamins and zinc is recommended for people with high risk dry amd - your eye md will be able to tell with a dilated retinal exam. As we learn more about the genetics of amd it is clear that there may be subtypes with different causes.

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Similar questions

A 21-year-old member asked:

What are dry and wet macular degeneration?

3 doctor answers8 doctors weighed in
Dr. David Kira
Ophthalmology 21 years experience
Very different: There are two general forms: dry accounts for about 85% of cases which is the slow breakdown of macular pigment and vision decrease. The wet form has a more rapid progression with formation of new blood vessels, severe vision loss and occasionally intraocular hemorrhage. There are new medications which can address this.
CA
A 21-year-old member asked:

What are the stages of wet macular degeneration?

3 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. David Kira
Ophthalmology 21 years experience
Actually types: Stages range from mild to severe. There are two general types: the dry form accounting for about 85% of cases which is generally a slow decrease of central vision. The wet form which is more severe has new blood vessels growing in the macula and generally causes more serious and rapid vision loss.
A 21-year-old member asked:

How will macular degeneration affect my vision, both now and in the future?

3 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. David Kira
Ophthalmology 21 years experience
It depends: Depending on the severity of the wet or dry form, macular degeneration is generally progressive. The rate is highly variable but with increasing severity, the central vision may become blurred and distorted while the peripheral vision remains essentially intact.
A 41-year-old member asked:

What happens to the vision if a person has macular degeneration?

3 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Elizabeth Holland
Specializes in Ophthalmology
Central vision loss: At it's most extreme, macular degeneration causes the central macula, or the most acute vision center of the eye, to be damaged. The vision loss can be severe, but usually the peripheral vision is spared and can be used to get around.
A 48-year-old member asked:

What magnifiers and other visual aids are recommended for macular degeneration?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Richard Bensinger
Ophthalmology 52 years experience
Several: The lions club in major cities runs a 'low vision clinic' with a selection of visual aids. It will depend upon your needs as to what is best for you and they have samples to try. There is also a new electronic device which looks like an iphone which you place on the print and it enlarges the image on the screen facing you. The lions can help you with this also.

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Last updated Feb 20, 2020

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