The field of ophthalmology is currently experiencing a period of significant development in terms of diagnosis and treatment, and this comes as welcome news given the increasing prevalence of eye diseases. With the average lifespan in industrialized countries on the rise, chronic eye conditions are becoming more common, as are the potential complications associated with them. Additionally, advancements in diagnostic tools are now allowing for the identification of a greater number of eye conditions, leading to more personalized and effective treatment options.
Two of the most prevalent age-related eye diseases are cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. Cataract surgery is now the most commonly performed eye surgery worldwide, and age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in individuals over the age of 50.
Dr. Enrico Giacomotti, head of Cataract Surgery at the Humanitas Castelli Eye Center, explains that cataracts are essentially the aging of the crystalline lens in the eye, leading to increased difficulty in focusing light on the retina. Symptoms can include discomfort in bright light and difficulty distinguishing colors, ultimately leading to a decrease in visual acuity. However, cataract surgery, which involves replacing the opaque lens with a transparent prosthesis, offers a safe and effective solution.
Senile maculopathy, the most common form of macular degeneration, affects the central area of the retina and can lead to a reduction in vision and visual quality over time. Dr. Davide Allegrini, head of the Maculopathy at the Humanitas Castelli Eye Center, explains that advanced diagnostic tools now allow for safe and detailed diagnoses of this condition. Treatment options include intravitreal injections of monoclonal antibodies, which counteract the growth factor responsible for the development of the membrane that affects the macula.
The availability of these advanced diagnostic and treatment options in the field of ophthalmology is providing hope for those affected by age-related eye diseases. With rapid and safe surgical interventions for cataracts and advanced therapeutic treatments for macular degeneration, individuals are now able to maintain and even improve their vision as they age. This represents a significant step forward in the field of eye health and provides reassurance to a growing number of individuals affected by age-related eye conditions.