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Does Medicare Cover Macular Degeneration?

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By Daniel Petkevich
Nov 30, 2022

See how Medicare can help with your ocular treatment

Knowing whether your eyesight can be solved with new glasses or something more serious can be tricky. If you are experiencing macular degeneration, treating it can be daunting. The good news is that Medicare has you covered. Let's talk through how you are covered.

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What is Macular Degeneration?

Macular degeneration is an eye disorder that causes damage to the macula, a part of the retina located in the back of your eye. It affects your central vision, making it difficult to read or recognize faces. The condition can be caused by age-related changes or run in families.

What are the symptoms of Macular Degeneration?

The main symptom of macular degeneration is blurry or distorted central vision. You may also experience difficulty recognizing faces, reading small print, and distinguishing colors. Other symptoms can include dark spots, blind spots in the center of your vision, and straight lines appearing wavy or bent.

How is Macular Degeneration treated?

Wet macular degeneration injections are medications such as anti-VEGF agents and photodynamic therapy. These may be prescribed to slow the disease's progress. Vitrecurgery may also be an option for some patients.

Does Medicare cover Macular Degeneration?

Yes, Medicare Part B covers many of the treatments for macular degeneration, including doctor visits, medications, and surgery.
Medicare covers the following wet macular degeneration injections:
  • Beovu
  • Eylea
  • Lucentis
  • Avastin
In addition, Medicare covers photodynamic therapy and laser treatments for macular degeneration. Medicare also pays for diagnostic tests such as fluorescein angiography and optical coherence tomography scans to diagnose and monitor the progression of the disease.
Medicare also covers certain preventive care measures like annual eye exams. However, Original Medicare does not cover the cost of glasses or contact lenses related to macular degeneration. Some Medicare Advantage plans offer coverage for eyeglasses and contacts. In addition, Medicare plans do not cover alternative treatments such as acupuncture and herbal supplements. You should check with your plan provider for specific details on benefits and coverage for macular degeneration treatments.

Alternatives to Medicare for those with Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration can be treated with lifestyle changes and medications. Your doctor may recommend eating a diet rich in dark leafy greens, omega-3 fatty acids, and antioxidants, quitting smoking, wearing sunglasses or protective eyeglasses when outdoors, and avoiding bright light from computers and other digital screens.
If you do not have Medicare or your plan does not cover the treatments for macular degeneration, there are other options available. Many health insurance plans offer coverage for macular degeneration treatments. You can also check with organizations such as The Macula Vision Research Foundation and Bright Focus Foundation to see if they offer any type of financial assistance.

Resources for those with Macular Degeneration

If you have been diagnosed with macular degeneration, there are many resources available to help you understand and manage the condition. The National Eye Institute provides educational materials on macular degeneration, including information about diagnosis and treatment options. There are also support groups for people living with macular degeneration that provide emotional and practical support.

Conclusion

Macular degeneration is a common eye condition that can cause vision loss. Fortunately, there are treatment options available for those with the condition, including medications and lifestyle changes. Medicare covers many of the treatments for macular degeneration, but remember to check with your doctor before pursuing any treatment options. This content is for informational purposes only. Talk with an expert at Fair Square Medicare for all your Medicare questions.

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