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Will you lose vision from Macular Degeneration? The answer is in your Genes!

Slide of a senior man with low vision or macular degenerationComplete Eye Care has been doing genetic testing for patients at risk for losing vision from Macular Degeneration for almost a decade now.

This technology is still amazing.  For the first time ever, we can predict which patients are at risk of losing vision from Macular Degeneration.  The testing is simple.  We use a small brush to swab the inside of the cheek. Next we send that sample to the lab.  About 4-6 weeks later, we receive the results and interpret the data.

Based on advanced genetic studies, there are 5 classifications for macular risk.  If you are in category 1, you only have a 3% chance of developing sight threatening macular disease.  However, if your tests come back as category 5, you have a 90% chance of losing vision due to macular disease.

Macular Risk testing is appropriate for any patient who has a family history of the disease or who has macular disease.  The test can be performed on patients any age, including infants.

If you have early macular signs clinically, we have found that most insurance will cover the cost and it is best to treat now rather than later.

What are some common symptoms?

  • a distortion of straight lines in your field of vision
  • a reduction in central vision
  • the need for brighter lighting
  • difficulty adapting to low lights
  • blurriness
  • trouble recognizing faces
  • a blurry spot in your field of vision
  • hazy vision
  • rapidly worsening symptoms

Macular Degeneration doesn't affect the peripheral vision, it is mostly the center vision that is affected.

What Causes Macular Degeneration?

  • being over the age of 65
  • being Caucasian
  • having a family history of macular degeneration
  • smoking
  • being overweight
  • having cardiovascular disease

Our Lawton and Newcastle Optometrists are experts in their field and are passionate about taking care of your eyes long-term. Dr. Chris Swanson, Dr. Shane Claborn, Dr. Brandon Ross, and Dr. Laura England are experts in their field and have worked many cases like these above in their time. This team of optometrists serves the Lawton, Oklahoma, area often extending out to Altus, Duncan, and Elgin. Their primary location of practice is at 4250 NW Cache Road.

To learn more about the disease of Macular Degeneration, click here.