Macular Society

Macular Degeneration - I have a retired Serviceman who is seeking advice on M D - he never smoked was diagnosed at 36 years of age -

Was never a Smoker and served in the R A N - Cabin of 24 of whom 23 Smoked - how many hours of a Cabin filled with smoke 7/24 would it take to get Macular please. Our Specialist states 10,000 hours - I find this totally unacceptable- His is not Hereditary

3 Replies


I can't answer your question but what I would say is that I didn't fit any of the criteria that put you most at risk from MD, but it didn't stop me getting wet MD in my right eye at the age of 45.

When I told my Optician about my diagnosis the first question was, how many cigarettes do I smoke each day... None. Am I diabetic... No... Do any of my family suffer from the same thing... No... Am I obese... No... Etc etc.

Sometimes there's nothing to blame it on. Your body decides to do something strange and hey presto your facing a challenge you couldn't have predicted.

I hope you're friends treatment is successful. I was very lucky after just 3 injections the bleed spotted and my sight was restored. The consultant said my age was working for me, so I hope that your friend has the same positive result.

Best wishes



Dear Pete

There are many forms of macular disease including genetic conditions which affect younger people. Please contact the Macular Society Helpline on 0300 3030 111 for information on Juvenile Macular Dystrophies.

It may be of help also for your friend to get in touch with Blind Veterans UK Tel 020 77235021.

We are not able to give you any figures on the amount of cigarettes smoked but should you wish to contact the Helpline to discuss please contact us on the number above.

Thank you

Macular Society Helpline


Unfortunately because of huge costs of Phone Calls in Australia we will not be able to ring any of the Two Numbers you gave - There has obviously been no research done on this subject and the Drs who made the rulings of 10,000 hrs have never been to Sea in a Cabin with 20 to 23 Men all who smoked with the exception of 1. Smoking since 1999 has been cut out now but before then it was rife. I thank you for your answer and hope I have some success at the appeal on Monday Morning 23 June.


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