Does anyone have any ideas on how to detect macular degeneration?

See a retina special. Central visual distortion, when the disease is severe enough, occurs. An eye doctor can see the disease on dilated retinal exam and with additional testing such as Fluorescein angiography and optical coherence tomography.
Examination. Typically it is first detected by examination. Because initially there are no symptoms. If the wet form develops, you may notice "waviness" in your vision or a central dark/blind spot.