A brighter outlook? Optometry and an ageing population

8 February 2023
Winter 2023

In the second part of our series looking at the impact of ageing, Léa Suruge asks how to support older patients whose quality of life has been affected by age-related eye disease, and reviews the treatments available.

Brian Brown, 79, was diagnosed with wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) 10 years ago. “I used to be a table tennis player, but I couldn’t see the ball or the lines on the table any more, so I had to stop. And I’ve been unable to drive for the last year, as I cannot read a licence plate up to 20 metres away. Giving up my driving licence has been difficult to accept.”

Living with his wife in High Wycombe and volunteering as treasurer of the local Macular Society group, Brian still leads an active social life. But his condition has affected his independence. To get into the clinic every six weeks for his anti-VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factors) injection, he must now take a taxi or rely on his son to drive him.

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The virtual Hospital Eye Service experience replaces the in-person experience pre-registration trainees would normally have gained in a hospital setting.

The College has provided key information to help you identify cases and guidance on managing circumstances that are relevant to optometry practices.