Age-related Macular Degeneration

Frequently Asked Questions

5. What are the stages of dry AMD?

Dry AMD has three stages -- early AMD, intermediate AMD, and advanced dry AMD. All of these may occur in one or both eyes.

People with early dry AMD have either several small drusen or a few medium-sized drusen. Drusen are yellow deposits under the retina which often are found in people over age 50. People with early AMD have no symptoms and no vision loss.

People with intermediate dry AMD have either many medium-sized drusen or one or more large drusen. Some people see a blurred spot in the center of their vision. More light may be needed for reading and other tasks.

In addition to drusen, people with advanced dry AMD have a breakdown of light-sensitive cells and supporting tissue in the macula. This breakdown can cause a blurred spot in the center of your vision.

Over time, the blurred spot may get bigger and darker, taking more of your central vision. You may have difficulty reading or recognizing faces until they are very close to you.