Ayurvedic Treatment for Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is now one of the major causes of blindness. It is now in the first place among the causes of blindness in the working group of population. 

In most cases, the early stage of the disease will be missed by the patients, because there will not be any serious visual problem in the very early stage. Only when the vision is seriously affected, the victim becomes aware of the condition. 

The usual symptoms are :

  • Blurring and decrease in vision especially in distant vision
  • Unable to look at bright light, especially sunlight
  • Certain areas in the visual field may be missing.
  • Distortion of the vision. i.e., straight line will be seen curved of zig-zagged.
  • Shape of the object may seem to be changed. i.e., sometimes objects may be seen large or small in size.
  • Darkness in the centre of the visual field, so the patient would be unable to see the focusing object. Gradually, the central darkness may increase in size and lead to total blackout.

Clinically, it can be described under two heads :

  1. Dry ARMD (atrophic type)
  2. Wet ARMD (Haemorrhagic type)

Dry ARMD is usually gradual in onset leading to blindness. When examined, hard exudates will be seen on the retina. In the case of wet ARMD, the onset will be sudden and there will be haemorrhage in the retina.

According to ayurvedic theories, macular degeneration is Vata-pitta predominant. In the case of dry type, vitiation of vata is more. So, Vata-Samana chikitsa concentrating on the head and eye is necessary to manage the case. For this, Brimhana nasyam, siro vasthi, siro dhara, nethra tharpanam, etc. are beneficial. 

But the medicine for each of these procedure should be selected very carefully because the medicine varies according to the body constitution of the patient, age of the patient, mental status of the patient, etc. etc. 

If there are any other systemic diseases, that also should be considered seriousely while selecting the medicines. In the case of wet type, pitta is more predominant and so, the medicine should be selected accordingly. 

Pittasamana, chakshushya and rasayana drugs are suitable for this. The treatment procedures should be mainly ksheeradhara, netrasekam, vitalakom, etc.