information on diet, nutrition, prevention & self-help
Macular edema is swelling of the macula, the small area of the retina responsible for central vision, of which the central 5% of the retina is most critical to vision. The edema is caused by fluid leaking from retinal blood vessels. Blood leaks out of the weak vessel walls into a very small area of the macula which is rich in cones, the nerve endings that detect color and from which daytime vision depends. Blurring occurs in the middle or just to the side of the central visual field, It can appear like one is looking through cellophane. Visual loss may progress over a period of months, and can be very annoying because of the inability to focus clearly.
- Learn about maintaining macular health.
- Healthy eye support recommendations These are very important for macular swelling.
- Supplement your diet with a good multivitamin and/or a good green drink.
- Diabetics: If you have diabetes you are more at risk, prevention and early attention to symptoms will be valuable.
- Injury: Similarly, if you injure your eye and notice fuzziness in your central vision be sure to see your eye doctor.
Because the macula is surrounded by many tiny capillaries, any conditions affecting the blood circulation anywhere in the body or in the eye can cause macular edema. Retinal capillary obstruction, inflammation of the eye, and age-related macular degeneration have all been associated with macular edema. The macula may also be affected by swelling following cataract surgery, but this normally resolves itself naturally.
ME rarely causes a permanent loss of vision, but the recovery is often a slow, gradual process over 2 to 15 months.
- Blurred central vision
- Distorted vision (straight lines may appear wavy)
- Vision is tinted pink
- Light sensitivity
- Diseases including retinal vein occlusion, macular degeneration, diabetic macular leakage, eye inflammation, idiopathic central serous chorioretinopathy, anterior or posterior uveitis, pars planitis, retinitis pigmentosa, radiation retinopathy, posterior vitreous detachment, epiretinal membrane formation, idiopathic juxtafoveal retinal telangiectasia, capsulotomy or iridotomy. Some patients may have a history of use of topical epinephrine or prostaglandin analogs for glaucoma.
- Eye surgery
The first line of treatment for CME is usually anti-inflammatory drops. In certain cases, medication is injected near the back of the eye for a more concentrated effect. Oral medications are sometimes prescribed to reduce the swelling.