The patient will perceive a spot at the center of the visual field; this can vary from blurring to an area that is completely black; the patient will find it difficult to read, write, recognize faces etc. The spot is more or less circular in shape and will be in a fixed position (its position does not change when the patient looks in a different direction); it will cause considerable distress because of its central position. When the patient is trying to read, the spot will cover and hide the words; if the spot is very large, it can completely cover the face of the person in front of the patient, making it very difficult to recognize him/her.
The retina and maculopathy
The retina is found in the posterior segment of the eye and its purpose is to receive the images from the outside world and transmit them to the optic nerve. Metaphorically, the retina can be likened to the film used in a traditional photographic camera. The most important part of the retina is the macula. When the macula is affected by any sort of disease, the condition is referred to as maculopathy.
The macula is situated in the posterior portion of the eye and directly receives the light rays that cross the cornea, the pupil and the crystalline. Thanks to the macula, people can read, work at a computer or drive a car.
The greatest number of photoreceptors is concentrated in the macula; these are cells involved in sight – they receive light impulses and transform them into electric signals that are sent to the brain.
The high number of photoreceptors present in the macula consents the recognition of details such as the written word or the details of someone’s face, and to perceive colors. The healthy macula is that part of the retina that allows a person to have a visual capacity of 10/10 and it is for this reason it is extremely important.
What is maculopathy?
If the macula is altered, there will be a sometimes considerable reduction in visual capacity. When the macula is affected by any sort of disease, the condition is referred to as maculopathy.
These two symptoms can be observed simultaneously and one can dominate the other. The patient may see a central spot with distorted edges or a major distortion with a small central spot.
Spectacles are not suitable for the correction of these symptoms; where feasible, medical and surgical therapies are necessary. CAMO – the clinic Centro Ambrosiano Oftalmico is specialized in the treatment of retinal pathologies. More specifically the team can treat:
- Age-related macular degeneration (AMD);
- Macular foramen;
- Vitreomacular traction;
- Posterior vitreous detachment;
- Retinal tears and abnormal vitreomacular adhesions;
- Retinal detachment;
- Floaters (myodesopsia);
The clinic’s department for surgery of the posterior segment is equipped with the most modern equipment currently available on the market, dedicated, highly-qualified staff and all of the infrastructure necessary for the treatment of retinal pathologies, as stipulated by SOI, The Italian Ophthalmology Society.