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Distorted vision and what it may mean

Distorted central vision has several causes and requires an urgent eye care assessment. If you have noticed distorted vision while reading, using your computer, tablet or mobile phone, there may be a macular problem. Distorted vision is a significant visual problem, often noticed by patients as they get older. This is when objects in the central vision appear crooked or distorted. It can occur in one or both eyes and can be gradual onset or sudden, and it does not go away.
Distorted vision may represent wet macular degeneration. Both Mr Jaheed Khan and Professor Michel Michaelides are ophthalmic specialists in medical retinal disease at Clinica London. They look after patients with wet macular degeneration. Wet macular degeneration is a form of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
AMD is a chronic progressive eye disease, which causes reduced, blurred vision or a blind or distorted spot in your central visual field. It is caused by abnormal blood vessels which leak fluid through to the retina at the macula. The macula is the most sensitive part of the eye responsible for your central vision, subtle discrimination of detail and colour vision. Early detection of wet macular degeneration can help you to reduce the chance of visual loss and even in some instances to recover vision. If you have a central visual disturbance where objects look wonky or distorted, this can be wet macular degeneration.
The Amsler chart is a very good way of monitoring your vision to see that the central vision maintains clear and undistorted. In another blog, I will talk in detail about the Amsler chart and its vital use at home and in clinics. The skilled clinical medical retinal specialists use advanced diagnostic tools to detect and image wet macular degeneration and offer treatment.
If you have the following symptoms, you may have wet macular degeneration:

    • Visual distortions where straight lines seem to be bent
    • Reduction of central vision in one or both eyes
    • Colours appearing less intense or bright
    • A blind spot or blurry spot in your central field of vision
    • A general haziness of your overall vision
    • Worsening of any of the above symptoms

Wet macular degeneration will not make you lose all your vision because it only affects the central part, i.e. the macula, and not the peripheral retina. You should arrange to see a medical retinal specialist if you notice any change in your central vision, your colour vision and ability to see in fine detail as these may be the early indicators of macular degeneration. This is particularly probable if you are over 55 years old.
Wet macular degeneration often develops in people who already have had dry macular degeneration. About 10% of people with age-related macular degeneration have the wet type. When the little blood vessels go through from the choroid underneath the retina into the macula, called choroidal neovascularisation, these may leak blood or fluid and interfere with the retinal cells’ function. Visual loss can occur by fluid build up at the back of the eye and the macula arising from these blood vessels from the choroid. The fluid arises between the choroid and the layer cells called the retinal pigment epithelium causing a microscopic elevation in the macula resulting in visual distortion or loss. This is seen in the OCT diagnostic testing.
The risk of age-related macular degeneration increases in people over the age of 65, where there has been a family history, in smokers, if you are obese, or if you have cardiovascular disease.
Request an appointment at Clinica London for a retinal macular assessment with Mr Jaheed Khan or Professor Michel Michaelides.

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