- Daily News for Senior Citizens

  FRONT PAGE • Aging • Health • Alzheimer's - Mental • Nutrition • Medicare & Medicaid • Politics  • Fitness  • Social Security • Alerts • Sex Health • Features • Retirement • Elder Care  >Search  >Senior Links


Senior Journal: Today's News and Information for Senior Citizens & Baby Boomers

More Senior Citizen News and Information Than Any Other Source -

• Go to more on Health & Medicine or More Senior News from on the Front Page


E-mail this page to a friend!

Health & Medicine for Senior Citizens

Major Cause of Blindness in Senior Citizens, Age-Related Macular Degeneration, Appears in Decline

U.S. study says AMD in those over 40 drops to 6.5% from 9.4% in 1994 - watch videos

Jan. 10, 2011 – In a rare bit of good news for senior citizens about their health, a new study has found a significant decline in the rate of the eye disease known as AMD or age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in senior citizens around the world.

An estimated 6.5 percent of Americans age 40 and older have AMD, which is a lower rate than was reported 15 years ago, according to a report in the January issue of Archives of Ophthalmology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

"Despite new medical and surgical interventions, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) remains an important cause of loss of vision in the United States," the authors write as background information in the article. They found the last nationally representative estimates of prevalence of AMD were based on the 1988-1994 Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) and set out to update these findings..


Related Archive Stories


Cataract Surgery Does Not Appear to Make Age-Related Macular Degeneration Worse

Editorial says more research is needed; patients should be briefed on all study findings - Nov. 9, 2009

Age-Related Macular Degeneration Halted by Blocking Protein to Stop Blood Vessel Growth

Protein CCR3 a new target for diagnosis and treatment of AMD, the most common cause of blindness in senior citizens.

June 15, 2009

Ten Years of Data on Studies of Age-Related Eye Disease Now Available to Researchers

Looked at progression of age-related macular degeneration and age-related cataract in 4,757 older adults - Nov. 11, 2008

Too Much Sunlight, Too Few Antioxidants Places Older Adults at Risk for Eye Disease

Second study finds older diabetes patients more likely to have eye disease than those without the disease - Oct. 13, 2008

Rehab Program Improves Visual Function for Low-Vision Elderly with Macular Disease

Low-vision rehabilitation aims to restore functional ability, such as reading - May 13, 2008

Robo4 Stops Age-Related Macular Degeneration, Diabetic Retinopathy in Mice

‘This is a major breakthrough in an area where the advances have been minimal’ - March 17, 2008

Canadians Claim Major Discovery in Fight Against Dry Form of AMD

Age-related macular degeneration discovery is new hope to fight leading cause of blindness in senior citizens - Feb. 20, 2008

Blinding Age-Related Macular Degeneration Progress Linked to Common Genetic Variants

Obesity and smoking found to greatly increase the risk - April 24, 2007

More Proof that Smoking Increases Risk of Age-Related Macular Degeneration, Blindness for Senior Citizens

Current smokers 4 times more likely to develop AMD; past smokers 3 times as likely to have advanced form of the disease - Aug. 13, 2007

Senior Citizens Show No Eye Disease Concern Despite Dramatic Increase

American Academy of Ophthalmology opens EyeSmart education effort  - Aug. 1, 2007

Are You Dying of Poor Vision? Older People with Cataracts or AMD at Higher Risk of Death

Unclear why there’s link between visual problems and death, maybe something not measured in this study  - July 9, 2007

Age-Related Macular Degeneration Risk Increases with Interaction of Genetics and Lifestyle

Mutant of CFH gene plus smoking increased risk 8.69 times - Jan. 9, 2007

Drug Treatment Slows Macular Vision Loss in Diabetics

Inspired by ranibuzumab (Lucentis) slowing vision loss in people with macular degeneration - Dec. 15, 2006

Gene Linked to Aggressive 'Wet' Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Patients with HTRA1 SNP 10 times more likely to have wet AMD  - Nov. 22, 2006

Drug Treatment Slows Macular Vision Loss in Diabetics

Inspired by ranibuzumab (Lucentis) slowing vision loss in people with macular degeneration -Dec. 15, 2006

Top 10 Stories of 2006 by Harvard Health Letter Picks Key Ones for Senior Citizens

Lucentis for macular degeneration, Zostavax for shingles make list - Dec. 4, 2006


Read the latest news
> Health & Medicine
Today's Headlines


Ronald Klein, M.D., M.P.H., of University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, and colleagues analyzed data from the 2005 to 2008 NHANES. A total of 7,081 individuals age 40 or older were selected to participate and had photographs taken of both eyes.

Digital images of the eyes were assessed for signs of AMD, including drusen (tiny yellow or white deposits in the retina), pigment changes and atrophy in the retina and surrounding tissue.

The overall prevalence of AMD among adults age 40 and older was an estimated 6.5 percent, which represented a decrease from the 9.4 percent reported in the 1988 to 1994 survey. The estimated prevalence of late (more advanced) AMD was 0.8 percent.

Non-Hispanic black individuals age 60 and older had a lower prevalence of any AMD than non-Hispanic white individuals of the same age.

"These estimates are consistent with a decreasing incidence of AMD reported in another population-based study and have important public health implications," the authors conclude.

"The decreasing prevalence of AMD may reflect recent change in the frequency of smoking and other exposures such as diet, physical activity and blood pressure associated with AMD. It remains to be seen whether public health programs designed to increase awareness of the relationships of these exposures to AMD in patients at risk and their physicians and eye care providers will continue to result in further decline of the prevalence of AMD in the population."

The research was supported by a National Health and Nutrition Examination survey contract, which provided funding for the entire study including collection and analyses of data. Additional support was provided by Senior Scientific Investigator Awards from Research to Prevent Blindness.

About Macular Degeneration

Also called: Age-related macular degeneration, AMD 

Macular degeneration, or age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of vision loss in Americans 60 and older. It is a disease that destroys your sharp, central vision. You need central vision to see objects clearly and to do tasks such as reading and driving.

AMD affects the macula, the part of the eye that allows you to see fine detail. It does not hurt, but it causes cells in the macula to die. In some cases, AMD advances so slowly that people notice little change in their vision. In others, the disease progresses faster and may lead to a loss of vision in both eyes. Regular comprehensive eye exams can detect macular degeneration before the disease causes vision loss. Treatment can slow vision loss. It does not restore vision.

>> NIH: National Eye Institute at MedlinePlus

Watch Video from National Eye Institute

>> Click to video = “What is Macular Degeneration”

Coping with Macular Degeneration - opens in new window


Watch Video from NIH Senior Health

"Coping with Macular Degeneration" [5 min 21 sec]



> Medical Malpractice,

> Nursing Home Abuse,

> Personal Injury

Our Experienced Lawyers Can Help

Beth Janicek, Board Certified Personal Injury Attorney"We win because we care, we prepare and we have no fear," Beth Janicek, board certified personal injury attorney


Free Consultation on your case.

Call Now Toll Free


or Send Email

More at our Website



Search for more about this topic on

Google Web

Keep up with the latest news for senior citizens, baby boomers


Click to More Senior News on the Front Page




Published by New Tech Media -

Other New Tech Media sites include,,,, etc.