Medical management of maculopathy

1 May 2008
Volume 09, Issue 2

A discussion of the latest treatment options in the medical management of maculopathy.

Introduction

The macula is a small, highly sensitive part of the retina which is responsible for detailed central vision. Anatomically the macula is defined as that portion of the retina that contains xanthophyll and two or more layers of ganglion cells. It measures approximately 5.5mm in diameter. This area can be further subdivided into several zones. The fovea centralis is a depression in the centre of the macula measuring approximately 1.5mm or one disc diameter. The central floor of the fovea is called the foveola. It measures approximately 0.35mm in diameter and lies within the foveal avascular zone (FAZ). The specialised histological structure in the macular region accounts for the predilection of certain disease processes to involve this area and for the variety of ophthalmoscopic changes peculiar to this area. In the macula we find the thickest portion of the retina surrounding the thinnest portion, the foveolar area (Gass 1997). This article aims to discuss in brief the pathogenesis of diseases (common and rare) affecting the macula and their medical management, including emerging therapeutic agents and ongoing research.

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