Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

Is there any discussion here concerning Age Related Macular Degeneration? I need some moral support while trying to get through the doctor appointments.

Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

JoParrott - Hope you made it through the doctor appointments and are getting the Macular Degeneration under control. My best advise would be to be sure and follow your doctor's instructions. Easpecially that being, if they do any kind of procedure and you get to feeling good - don't get out in the garden and start pulling or tugging or digging, or whatever you enjoy doing outside. Be patient and follow your doctor's advise.

Sorry I'm not more helpful. Best of luck!!!

Mantua, UT(Zone 4b)

My neighbor had Macular Degeneration and was treated successfully for it a few years ago. I'm sure treatments have changed since then. Getting appointments with the right doctor is frustrating. If they put you off for a long time ask if you can get on a waiting list in case they have a cancellation.


Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

Linda - How do you know when you are getting the right doctor?

N.C. Mts., NC(Zone 6b)

Ask if you have wet MD or dry MD. If You have wet MD they can give you shots in your eyes. Three of my brothers and 2 sisters are getting the shots now.

Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

Interesting lizh.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

AMD is strongly hereditary- both of my older sisters have it in one eye- mine is in both. So far not much change in my daytime vision, but in dim places I can't distinguish shapes or outlines at all. I have had a time getting my glasses right since my cataract surgery- I am waiting for the 5th set of lenses from Lenscrafters! This last pair got the prescription right but they put my trifolal line down way too far! But they are really good about making you happy!

Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

My uncle is dealing with some of the exact same things you are talking about. He is looking into the trifolal lenses. He had cataract surgery a couple months back.

Jo - It is good to hear that the last pair of glasses got the perscription right. Sounds like you are being persistant, and that is what it takes.. Some people would have settled for the first pair of glasses and look where that would have left you.

Will hope for the VERY best for you.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

I have worn trifocals for many years- the cataract surgery didn't change that- it just made my world much brighter! But when the shadows that I see at night didn't go away, tests showed that it was the AMD probably causing them- I can live with that, but am so fearful of losing my central vision- right now I'm OK there, and take all the recommended vitamins. I even do reflexology in hopes---

Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

I think healthful living can take a person a long way. Hopefully the eyesight as well.

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

Jo,

Do you eat spinach? I know almost nothing about AMD, except this one thing which my eye Dr told me a few years ago. I don't even recall how we got on the subject, as I don't have MD. I think we must have been talking about the medicinal power of certain foods. Anyhow, he told me that spinach had been found to help prevent and/or improve MD. He said it was the lutein in spinach that had this incredible preventative and curative power. It has been a while, but I believe at the time he even said the lutein in spinach accomplished what medical science could not (at least at that time). He went on to caution against taking lutein supplements, saying that supplements have not been shown to have the same effect.

I realize this may be old news to you, but I wanted to mention it just in case. It sounds like your main concern is that your situation not get worse, which seems like just the sort of thing for which the lutein in spinach is supposed to be the perfect medicine. If you haven't done so already, you might want to read up on the spinach/MD relationship, how much to take, etc and consider eating spinach regularly. There doesn't seem to be a downside to eating more spinach. No side effects. In fact, we should ALL start eating more spinach asap.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I agree about eating more spinach! Our doctor also cautioned against using lutein supplements. It's always good to hear another doctor feels the same way.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

Interesting- I am not a big eater of spinach, but I do eat lots of other greens-? And I take a lot of Lutein- strange how there are so many contradicting opinions of everything- prescriptions and non--- one doesn't know which way to go, other than take some self responsibility and do what you feel good about.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I'd go with whatever your doctor says, not commercials or TV doctors or friends.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

Both my Optometrist & Retina specialist said take Lutein along with all the other recommended supplements on the AREDS list, so one just has to do what you feel best with. At any point, probably after the AMD has begun nothing is going to stop it's progress- slow down-? maybe somewhat. They both said the most important factor is keeping stress under control- not easy to do.

N.C. Mts., NC(Zone 6b)

I don't think there is anything out now that will cure MD. The shots will slow down the process. My brother and sister"s doctors were told to take Lutein. They don't have the same Doctor.They live in 3 different states.

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

A few things to consider with respect to contradictory advice regarding spinach and/or lutein:

(1) The information I posted came from my eye Dr some 5yrs or more ago. At that time, he said studies had actually shown significant improvement in people who ate [some specified qty] of spinach, but that this had not been shown to be true of lutein supplements. However, it is possible that subsequent studies conducted since that time may have shown supplements to work. That is one possibility that might explain the difference in recommendations. In looking over the information on this thread, I didn't see anything about spinach or lutein, so I posted what the eye Dr told me several years ago with the hope that it would prod you to do further research on the subject and consider eating spinach (or taking the supplement) IF you were not already doing so.

(2) When considering food vs supplement, I personally think food is the better way to go, but, again, that's just my opinion. Two major arguments inform my position on this. They are: (1) With pretty much any nutrient, Drs and scientists acknowledge that there may be other, as yet unknown, chemicals in the food/plant which in combination with the known nutrient (in this case lutein) produce the full beneficial effect, and that taking a supplement of the nutrient alone may, therefore, not produce the same effect. (2) With supplements there are always concerns about purity, possible contamination, and how much of the actual ingredient exists in the supplement. There have been a number of instances in the past where various supplements have been found to include harmful substances. Again, this is just my opinion, but as I see it there is rarely a downside to consuming more leafy green vegetables - unless you really hate them, that is.

(3) If you are really conflicted on the supplement vs food issue, you might consider doing both. There are few if any side effects to eating more spinach and/or other leafy green veggies, so there is no reason you couldn't do so even if you are taking the lutein supplement.

(4) The information I relayed to you from my eye Dr was specific to spinach, lutein, and MD. I don't know if the same effect may be obtained from other 'greens'. After reading your question, I checked and other greens do contain lutein (in combination with another antioxidant apparently now also associated with improvements in MD) in varying concentrations. I fact, if lutein (and the other associated antioxidant) alone is the key, kale would actually appear to be the better choice as it contains some 8x the lutein. Other greens I checked, such as turnip, mustard, chard, and beet, also contain lutein but in smaller quantities than either spinach or kale. It may be that any leafy green will work. Kale may even be the better option. The early tests may have been conducted using spinach either arbitrarily or even by some group hoping to increase spinach consumption. Also, there may be newer info available today showing that other greens are effective - or even info negating the effectiveness of lutein at all. If I were you, I would google the subject and scan the info from a few sources.

Sorry if my comments caused you angst. They were not meant to do so. I just wanted to make sure you had at least heard about the spinach/lutein MD connection - again, hoping this might prompt further exploration of the subject on your part. I hope some of this information may help in your search for answers. I wish you the very best of luck in this matter. It sounds like you are doing all of the right things.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

DreamofSpring, please don't apologize for anything- I for one really appreciate you taking the time to write a helpful post- I am not boxed into any one thing over another- I have found that the majority of doctors have no time to research the effects of vitamin supplements; they are kept updated by pharmaceutical salespeople with all the latest prescriptions, but since there is no money for them in non- prescriptions- why should they bother? It is very rare to find a medical doctor who even thinks positively about OTC medicines. I believe we can benefit from the best of both worlds- but obtaining accurate information is not easy. one has to be aggressive and research every possiblity.
My AMD is still the dry form, so there is no treatment until and if it progresses to the wet- which is the form that steals the central vision away.
I am also taking Saffron capsules, as per an Australian study that I found out about.

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