With the holiday season and family gatherings right around the corner, your vision may not be top of mind, but it is important to remember your sight is essential. As the year ends, now is as good a time as ever to prioritize your sight, as you may have benefits that expire on December 31.
Blurry vision, worsening eyesight, and wavy lines are just some of many symptoms that may be written off as a part of aging, but could actually be signs of retinal diseases such as Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration (Wet AMD), Diabetic Retinopathy (DR), or Diabetic Macular Edema (DME). These diseases can progress overtime if undetected and can even lead to blindness. What’s more is the number of Wet AMD cases is expected to double by 2050, potentially impacting more than five million people. Not to mention that 40 to 45 percent of Americans currently diagnosed with diabetes have some stage of DR.
COVID-19 has upended nearly all aspects of daily life and many people may be reluctant, or even afraid, to prioritize eye care during the pandemic. A survey conducted by the American Academy of Ophthalmologists in April 2020 found that patient volume had decreased by up to 75% in many offices following COVID-19 outbreaks. Dr. Rishi P. Singh, renowned Midwest retina specialist and author of a recent study examining frequency of eyecare visits, is here to encourage all of us to be proactive with our eyesight.
A recent study by Dr. Singh found that Wet AMD patients who missed treatment visits suffered noticeable consequences to their vision, sometimes irreversible, further emphasizing the importance of prioritizing eyecare. Everyone should feel empowered to continue monitoring their eye health with their doctors to ensure a timely diagnosis and potential treatment, if needed.