HAMBURG, Germany, Sept 26, 2013– The Angiogenesis Foundation released a white paper at the 13th Euretina Congress that addresses the barriers faced by individuals worldwide in obtaining optimal care for wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD). Wet AMD is the most common form of blindness in people 50 years or older in developed nations. The white paper, “Advocating for the Improved Treatment and Outcomes for Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration,” is the result of the second International Expert Summit on wet AMD convened in June by the nonprofit Angiogenesis Foundation in Berlin, Germany. A multidisciplinary group of global leading experts spent two days reviewing the most recent progress in the field and addressing the challenges that persist to optimizing diagnosis and treatment of wet AMD.
New therapies and diagnostic techniques, specifically antiangiogenesis therapy and spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT), have produced a paradigm shift in the diagnosis and treatment of wet AMD. These techniques—along with early diagnosis—can prevent, slow and, in some cases, even reverse vision loss.
“The rapid advances in treatment options for wet AMD, however, leave many unknowns on how to optimize treatment, and how best to manage the condition long-term,” commented Dr. William Li, President and Medical Director of the Angiogenesis Foundation. “There is a persistent concern that many patients with wet AMD are not receiving the available care they need to maintain vision and prevent progressive vision loss.”
Overcoming the current challenges to optimal care for wet AMD will require the concerted efforts of all global stakeholders, including patients, family caregivers, physicians, researchers, industry leaders, regulators, and health policy makers. Moreover, a new generation of multi-skilled and independent AMD opinion leaders needs to be identified and mentored, as almost all aspects of AMD prevention, diagnosis, and treatment are undergoing rapid evolution.
The white paper provides an extensive analysis of the issues and proposed solutions for improving vision outcomes for AMD patients worldwide. It can be downloaded at www.scienceofamd.org/international-whitepaper.