INFORMATION FOR PATIENTS

UNDERSTANDING

RETINAL DISEASES

 

Retinal diseases are a diverse range of conditions that affect vision. This site is designed to help you learn more about specific conditions, how they're treated and provide support resources.

    WET AGE-RELATED MACULAR DEGENERATION (wAMD)

    As we age, we become more prone to conditions like age-related macular degeneration (AMD).2 There are two types of AMD: dry AMD and wet AMD.2,3 Dry AMD is the more common of the two, however wet AMD is the more serious and can result in rapid vision loss.2,3

    Wet AMD occurs when abnormal blood vessels grow in the back of the eye, specifically in an area called the macula, which is responsible for sharp, central vision.3 This results in deterioration of the macula, and symptoms such as 2,3:

    • A well-defined blurry spot or blind spot in your field of vision
    • Visual distortions, such as straight lines seeming bent
    • Reduced central vision in one or both eyes
    • Impaired color vision
    • General haziness in your overall vision
    • Increasing sensitivity to bright lights/trouble adjusting from bright to dim lights

    Common risk factors for AMD are smoking, high blood pressure, being overweight and having a family history of the condition2. If you think you have any symptoms of AMD or your vision is deteriorating, speak with your physician or have your eyes checked as soon as possible.

    wAMD

    Common risk factors for AMD are smoking, high blood pressure, being overweight and having a family history of the condition2. If you think you have any symptoms of AMD or your vision is deteriorating, speak with your physician or have your eyes checked as soon as possible.

    References:

    DIABETIC MACULAR EDEMA (DME)

    Compared to healthy individuals, patients with diabetes are at higher risk of developing microvascular complications such as diabetic eye disease, a group of eye conditions that includes mainly diabetic retinopathy (DR), which often leads to diabetic macular edema (DME). Other types of eye diseases that patients with diabetes are at increased risk of include cataracts and glaucoma.1

    If diabetes is not well controlled, high blood sugar can cause damage to the tiny blood vessels in the retina – the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye – which can lead to Diabetic Retinopathy (DR). When DR occurs, the retinal blood vessels can swell, leak or become blocked, or new, weaker blood vessels may form.1,2

    If the damaged blood vessels then leak and cause a build-up of fluid, this can lead to a swelling in an area of the retina called the macula.1,2

    When the macula swells with fluid, it causes the central vision to become blurry or distorted. This is known as DME, a common consequence of DR that is the most common cause of vision loss among people with diabetes, increasing their risk for blindness.1,2

    If you have DR, and develop DME, you may experience blurry or wavy vision, and most importantly, vision loss, which may reduce your ability to do everyday things such as reading, driving, and recognising faces. This may hinder you from doing the things you love, affect your quality of life, and potentially limit your independence.1,3

    Talk to your doctor if you would like help with managing your diabetes.

    DME

    If you have DR and develop DME you may experience blurry or wavy vision, which may reduce your ability to do everyday things such as reading, driving and recognizing faces. This may stop you doing the things you love, affect quality of life and potentially your independence.1,3

    Talk to your doctor if you would like help with managing your diabetes.

    References:

    RETINAL VEIN OCCLUSION (RVO)

    RVO is the second most common cause of vision loss from diseases that affect the blood vessels in the retina.1-3 

    Exactly why central RVO develops is not fully understood, but there are some specific things that happen within the eye that lead to vision disturbances:2-8

    • Central RVO occurs when the central retinal vein becomes blocked, or occluded, and obstructs blood flow from the eye causing vision loss.4 In central RVO, blood clots or reduced blood flow in the central retinal vein draining the retina occurs.2-5 
    • In branch RVO, vision loss and distortion occur due to occlusion (blockages) of branch retinal veins. Severity of vision loss depends on the extent and location of the occlusion in RVO.5,6 The compression of a vein at an arteriovenous crossing is considered the main cause of branch RVO, either due to hypertension or hardening of the arteries7,8 

    If you think you have any symptoms of RVO or your vision is deteriorating, speak with your physician or have your eyes checked as soon as possible.

    RVO

    If you think you have any symptoms of RVO or your vision is deteriorating, speak with your physician or have your eyes checked as soon as possible.

    References:

    This website contains information on EYLEA® (aflibercept solution for injection) which is based on the Summary of Product Characteristics (SPC) as approved by the European Commission. It is intended to provide information to an international audience outside the USA and UK. In countries outside the EU the local Product Information applies.

    PP-EYL-ALL-0513-1. Last updated on 29/02/2020