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Does Cataract Surgery for Macular Degeneration Make the Condition Worse?

imgpsh_fullsize (2)Many of our patients who undergo cataract surgery also have macular degeneration. This is not surprising given that both conditions are more likely to occur as we age. There is one common question for patients and a concern for eye surgeons regarding whether undergoing surgery for macular degeneration can actually worsen the condition.

There are two types of macular degeneration – dry macular degeneration and wet macular degeneration. Dry macular degeneration refers to the wear and tear aging of the central part of the retina, also known as the macula.

The effect of cataract surgery for macular degeneration is controversial, and the results of the different studies are inconsistent. Multiple studies suggest that cataract surgery accelerates the progression of age-related macular degeneration.

Many of these population-based studies are, however, reports of frequency, and it can be challenging to differentiate between association and action. The effect of cataract surgery for macular degeneration gets further confused when one looks at early as opposed to late disease and wet as opposed to dry AMD and considers the standards used to evaluate and grade the macular degeneration.

In addition, there is inconsistency in the risk factors being controlled statistically. For instance, theBeaver Dam Eye Study reported an association between cataract surgery and early AMD; Freeman and colleagues found an association between cataract surgery and late AMD.

The Blue Mountains Eye Study did not find an association between cataract surgery and either early or late age-related macular degeneration; and the Rotterdam Study found an association between cataract surgery and early AMD but not wet AMD.

There was a concern that patients who undergo cataract surgery may make wet macular degeneration worsen if they have it already. The mechanism of this is uncertain. We do know that inflammatory molecules are released at the time of cataract surgery. That could have a potential negative effect on wet macular degeneration.

While cataract surgery for macular degeneration can go well, from a homeopathic standpoint, the surgery can cause suppression.  This means that if you don’t take care of the underlying problem, whether it’s elevated lead or some other toxic problem in the body that’s causing the cataract, then the disease will manifest in another way.

Natural Treatment Options for Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration presents a serious problem and a threat to the independence of many people as they get older.  However, natural substances do exist that can substantially reduce the risk.

There are natural treatment options as opposed to surgery for macular degeneration.  Consider these facts:

Carotenoids such as lutein and zeaxanthin help to fortify macular optical pigment density and play a vital role in eye health.

Beneficial carotenoids must be properly broken down to produce maximum benefit. Taurine, a potent antioxidant, helps to restore tissues in the eye that have worn out. Ginkgo biloba, a powerful antioxidant, improves arterial blood flow and cellular metabolism.

Omega-3 fatty acids promote retinal development and repair. Bioidentical hormones are currently a subject of study for possible applications in treating ARMD.If you would like a second opinion regarding the treatment of your ARMD or are interested in learning more about homeopathic or alternative treatments, visit our website today then seek a referral from your physician.