• 08-FEB-2016

  • SOURCE: Bausch + Lomb

92 Yr-Old Conceptual Tech Designer Encourages Others to Help Fight for Their Vision during National Age-Related Macular Degeneration Awareness Month.

Retinal Specialist Talks Vision Loss Risk Factors and Tips to Help Preserve Sight


Barbara Knickerbocker Beskind, along with an estimated 11 million Americans per year[1], has been impacted by AMD, a progressive disease that affects central vision and is a leading cause of vision loss in people over the age of 50[2]. But at 92, Barbara does not let her age or vision loss hold her back from anything – including becoming an author, the first private practice occupational therapist, and fulfilling her dreams as a designer at a top firm in Silicon Valley – where she is currently designing a pair of glasses to help those with AMD.

Barbara discusses how she continues to achieve her dreams despite having AMD, what motivates her to preserve her vision for the future and how to live life to the fullest at any age! Dr. Michael Cooney, a retinal specialist and expert in the study of retinal diseases, such as AMD, discusses that while there is no cure for AMD, there are steps that can help reduce the risk of progression if you are diagnosed.

Quick Facts:
- February is National Age-Related Macular Degeneration Month
- AMD, or Age-related Macular Degeneration, left untreated, is a leading cause of vision loss for Americans age 50 and older[2].
- AMD affects as many as 11 million Americans[1] and as the population ages, the number of cases is expected to increase[1].
- People with early stage AMD often do not experience any symptoms or changes in their vision[3] .
- Women have a higher rate of AMD[2].
- Avoiding smoking can reduce the risk[2].

[1] Forecasting Age-Related Macular Degeneration Through the Year 2050 — The Potential Impact of New Treatments". David B. Rein, PhD; John S. Wittenborn, BS; Xinzhi Zhang, MD, PhD; Amanda A. Honeycutt, PhD; Sarah B. Lesesne, BS; Jinan Saaddine, MD, MPH; for the Vision Health Cost-Effectiveness Study Group. Archives of Ophthalmology. 127(4):533-540. April 2009.
[2] "Age-related Macular Degeneration". Neil M. Bressler, M.D; Susan B. Bressler, M.D.; Stuart L. Fine, M.D. for the Retinal Vascular Center, Wilmer Opthalmological Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland USA. Survey of Ophthalmology, Volume 32, Issue 6, May-June 1988, Pages 375-413 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0039625788900525
[3] National Eye Institute: Facts About Age-Related Macular Degeneration https://nei.nih.gov/health/maculardegen/armd_facts