I would like to wish all my readers and patients who are mothers and grandmothers, a very Happy Mother’s Day today! As a son, I am always grateful to my mother for all her love for her family and the sacrifice that she has made to bring up her 3 sons and I hope she is proud of us.
The majority of my patients who suffer from wet AMD are women. As macular degeneration (AMD) is a disease that affects the elderly, it tends to affect more women as women statistically live longer than men. Another reason may be that estrogen (a female hormone) becomes less after menopause. This estrogen deficiency may increase menopausal women’s risk of developing AMD. A study from USA suggests that hormone replacement therapy may reduce a woman’s risk of developing wet AMD. However, it also showed that there was a slightly increased risk of dry AMD for women on HRT.
There are many issues with taking HRT after menopause and not all women may be keen on that option. Another option to prevent AMD is to take nutrional supplements. Suppplements with anti-oxidant properties can reduce oxidative stress to the retina. Oxidative stress is one of the key steps towards the development of AMD. A large study has shown than diets rich in lutein and zeaxanthin can help prevent AMD in women. Lutein and zeaxanthin are xanthophyll pigments that are found in the macula. They function to protect the macula from UV induced oxidative stress and have anti-oxidant properties. In fact, a very large clinical trial called AREDS 2 is ongoing to look at the benefit of omega-3 fish oil, lutein and zeaxanthin supplements in the prevention of wet AMD.
I encourage all my patients with any signs of dry or wet AMD to take omega 3 fish oil, lutein and zeaxanthin. I believe that these anti-oxidant nutrients have a role to play and have few side effects compared to HRT or other anti-oxidants like beta-carotene. Omega 3 fish oil also has many other beneficial effects for your heart, joints, and blood vessels.
Many readers have been asking me about my upcoming book. Rest assured that it is in the final stages of production. There was a delay in its publication due to my co-author and wife, Chui Hoong, giving birth to our 3rd child 3 months ago. We are also translating the book into Chinese for the benefit of my Chinese speaking patients. The book will be bilingual, have lots of fantastic recipes that are good for your eyes, and a little bit on common eye diseases. I am very excited that our project for the last year is finally coming to fruition and look forward to sharing the book with all of you!
A cataract is clouding of the lens in your eye. This is usually due to old age but can also occur due to trauma, diabetes, or due to medications.
Cataract surgery is done when the lens in your eye has become cloudy making it difficult for you to see well enough to carry out your usual daily activities. If the cataract is not removed, your vision may stay the same, but it will probably gradually get worse. Waiting for a longer period of time may make the operation more difficult. If you are considering surgery, please let the doctor know if you are taking the following medications: Flomax (Tamsulosin), Doxazosin, Asprin, or any blood thinning drugs like Warfarin, Plavix or Ticlid (Dipyradimole). These medications may need to be stopped before surgery.
You can listen to Dr Fong talking about cataract surgery.
The purpose of the operation is to replace the cataract with a plastic lens (implant) inside your eye. This usually done under local anesthesia. With a local anaesthetic you will be awake during the operation. You will not be able to see what is happening, but you will be aware of a bright light...Read More
aims to educate the public about the prevention of AMD through diet.Read More
What is retinopathy of prematurity? Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) occurs in infants who are born prematurely, where blood vessels in the retina do not form normally. The retina is a thin sheet ...
Since 2006, eye doctors have been recommending a high dose of antioxidants and zinc for AMD patients to reduce their risk of getting advanced AMD (bleeding at the macula). The doses of Vitamin C, E, b...
Epiretinal membrane is also known as macula pucker or cellophane maculopathy. Recovery after vitrectomy surgery to remove this fine scar tissue covering the macula can take up to 3 months. Surgery is ...