A new study has found that there may be a potential benefit in the treatment of the most common dry form of Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD), using a commonly prescribed Statin drug (used to lower cholesterol). This drug, known by the brand name Lipitor is already commonly prescribed to treat raised cholesterol, but has been found (in a small trial) to reduce the build up of debris underneath the retina which is associated with the dry type of AMD.
The study found that the drug could reduce, or eliminate these deposits, called drusen, particularly “soft” drusen, and lead to a moderate increase in Visual Acuity in affected subjects. The study was trialling a higher dose of the drug than commonly prescribed to treat the cholesterol issue alone, but seemed to be effective – further investigations, with a larger study will be required to ensure that the treatment is safe and effective.
Until now, the only effective help for Dry AMD has been anti-oxidant Vitamins, minerals and other supplements, which do seem to slow the progression of the disease, but perhaps in future there may be other possibilities?
As this problem affects millions of people worldwide, this is potentially exciting news!