Macular degeneration, computer artwork

IMAGE NUMBER: SH0589 LICENSE: RIGHTS MANAGED

Macular degeneration. Computer artwork of a healthy eye (top) and an eye affected by wet age-related macular degeneration. Details of the back of the retina are shown in the circles at right. At left are the photoreceptors (red and green) with the blood vessels that supply the eye behind them. In wet, or neovascular, macular degeneration new blood vessels grow in the back of the eye. The blood vessels are weak and bleed. The vessels and the bleeding can prevent light reaching the back of the eye. This causes a central spot in the vision as well as distortion, and often leads to blindness. Treatment is either with laser therapy to destroy the new blood vessels or with injection of anti-angiogenesis drugs (drugs that prevent new blood vessels forming).

Credit: Gunilla Elam / Science Source

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