Photodynamic Therapy for Wet AMD

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While there is no cure for wet age related macular degeneration, patients do have treatment options that may prevent, or halt the progression of the disease. If wet AMD has developed in areas close to, or underneath the center of the macula, then Photo Dynamic Therapy, or PDT, is one option. During PDT, a laser is focused through the eye and onto the retina. The laser comes in contact with a special dye that is injected into the bloodstream, which then reacts, sealing the abnormal blood vessels to prevent further damage to the eye. The major advantage of PDT is that the laser uses no heat. This prevents damage to healthy tissue surrounding the area to be treated, allowing the procedure to be repeated multiple times if necessary. PDT rarely has any side effects, but it is important to wear sunglasses and protective clothing while outdoors for several days following treatment. There is a chance that abnormal blood vessels can grow back, and may require additional laser treatments. PDT is not a cure for macular degeneration. After treatment it is important to check one's vision regularly using an at-home test, and to make regular visits to the doctor for follow-up care.

 

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