First club for macular degeneration patients launched in the city

The city's first club for patients with macular degeneration was established to offer education and medical help for patients.

The city’s first club for patients with macular degeneration was established at the Shanghai Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat Hospital to offer education and medical help for patients.

Macular degeneration is the major eye disease causing blindness in middle-aged and elderly people. Most patients develop symptoms after 50 years of age and incidence grows along with age.

In China, about 10 percent of people aged between 60 and 69 suffer from the condition. 

When it comes to Shanghai, 33.2 percent of people with registered residency were aged 60 or older by the end of last year, which translates into a large number of patients.

However, most people have poor awareness of the condition and usually confuse it with the symptoms of cataract, missing the optimum period for diagnosis and treatment, doctors said.

Proper treatment can help keep a patient's vision and improve life quality.

The causes of macular degeneration are unknown, but it is mostly seen among the elderly, people with severe myopia and some people with a family history.

The club will offer lectures to promote knowledge of the condition and help patients perform self monitoring to detect new developments of the disease in time for medical guidance, doctors promised.

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