Macular degeneration is a common type of eye disease that leads to vision loss. Macular degeneration is one of the reasons why it’s important to receive regular eye care near Chicago. By scheduling exams on an annual basis, your eye doctor can detect signs of the disease early. There are many tests your eye doctor can use to diagnose macular degeneration. Generally, patients will first undergo a visual acuity exam to assess how well you see distant objects. Then, you can expect to undergo a dilated eye exam at the optical center .
To dilate your eyes, the ophthalmologist will apply special eye drops. You’ll need to wait for a few minutes to let the eye drops work. Then, the eye doctor will use a device called an ophthalmoscope, which allows him or her to evaluate the retina. If your doctor notices abnormalities that may indicate macular degeneration, he or she may use an Amsler grid. If you have macular degeneration, the lines on the grid may appear wavy or they may disappear altogether. Sometimes, eye patients are asked to undergo fluorescein angiography and optical coherence tomography (OCT), which involves injecting dye into a vein and taking a picture of the macula. This is helpful for diagnosing the wet form of macular degeneration.