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There are two types of AMD.
- Non-exudative (also known as dry AMD) is the most common form of the disease and has a better long-term visual prognosis than wet AMD.
- Exudative (also known as wet AMD) is associated with the development of new blood vessels that grow beneath the retina leading to bleeding, scarring and severe reduction in central vision.
Signs of macular degeneration include loss of central vision (either gradually or suddenly), difficulty reading or performing tasks that require the ability to see detail and/or distorted or wavy vision. Presently there is no cure for AMD. Most individuals with reduced central vision benefit from low vision rehabilitative therapy. Laser coagulation may be effective for some patients with wet AMD although the recurrence of new vessel growth following laser treatment is over 50%. Many experimental treatments are currently being tested for their effectiveness in treating macular degeneration. Some research also indicates the role of antioxidant vitamins and nutritional supplements may be helpful for the prevention of AMD in some patients.