Q&A: Can supplements fight macular degeneration?

Consumer Reports News: September 21, 2009 10:44 AM

Can antioxidant supplements for the eyes fight macular degeneration? —D.C., Bellport, N.Y.

Yes, if you already have the potentially blinding condition but it’s not too advanced. In a study of 4,757 people, those with moderate macular degeneration who took a daily antioxidant eye supplement (Ocuvite PreserVision and others) cut the risk of further retinal damage by 25 percent. But talk with your ophthalmologist first, since high doses of some antioxidants in the pills have been linked to health risks: beta-carotene with lung cancer in smokers, for example, and vitamin E with heart failure in people with diabetes.

Read up on the symptoms of macular degeneration, find out if you should take Avastin for age-related macular degeneration, and see our comparison of 11 treatments(subscribers only).  


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