The three stages are named as such due to the symptoms that gradually get worse as the condition develops.
- Early dry AMD doesn’t cause any symptoms.
- Intermediate dry AMD, some people still have no symptoms. Others may notice mild symptoms, like mild blurriness in their central vision or trouble seeing in low lighting.
- Late AMD (wet or dry type), many people notice that straight lines start to look wavy or crooked. You may also notice a blurry area near the centre of your vision. Over time, this blurry area may get bigger or you may see blank spots. Colours may also seem less bright than before, and you may have more trouble seeing in low lighting.
Dry AMD happens in three stages: early, intermediate, and late. It usually progresses slowly over several years. Once in the late stage of dry AMD there is no treatment, but individuals are able to find ways to make the most of remaining vision. Additionally, if you have late dry AMD in only one eye, you can take steps to protect your other eye.
Wet AMD causes vision loss to go faster in comparison to dry AMD. This occurs when abnormal blood vessels grow in the back of the eye and damage the macula. It is important to note that at any stage of dry AMD, it can turn into wet AMD — but wet AMD is always in the late stage. However, there are treatment options available for wet AMD.
In order to diagnose the condition properly, individuals will have to go to an optometrist. There, a magnifying glass with a light will be used to look at the back of their eyes and check their vision.