Facts and Statistics

    • Macular degeneration involves the deterioration of the macula, a small area in the retina at the back of the eye.

    • When the macula is compromised, problems with central vision - such as blurriness, dark areas or distortion - can occur. For many people, macular degeneration makes activities such as reading and driving, or even seeing faces, difficult or impossible.

    • There are different kinds of macular degeneration, but age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common.

    • AMD is the leading cause of severe vision loss in the developed world. It affects an estimated one million Canadians.

    • The cause of AMD is unknown, but smoking, a family history of AMD, female gender, advanced age, and lighter skin colour are all considered significant risk factors.

    • AMD is far more common in people over the age of 50, although it can affect people at a younger age.

    • Given the aging of Canada's population, AMD is becoming a looming public health issue.