Log in
Macular Society
2,465 members β€’ 1,180 posts

Vision good at eye doc but not for reading?

I hope you can help. I have wet macular degeneration in both eyes. I get shots every four weeks in right eye since last April. They are monitoring left eye. I am I see 20/20 or 20/30 at the eye doc but at work I do a lot of reading on paper and enlarged monitor. The problem is I can see the eye chart at eye doc and can see words on paper and monitor BUT it's so much effort to sustain reading. I am not keeping up at work, missing timelines, and that is because I am so much slower with use of magnifiers and breaks for eyes and the extra effort. Does anyone else "see" ok at eye doc but can't sustain reading?

9 Replies
oldest β€’ newest

me too. I've given up reading, working on computers and photography all of which I did for a living. I'm still able to drive cause I can see pretty well @6feet plus.

there is neurological term for nit bring able to comprehend what you're reading. It had to do with the brain naturally NOT easily, ir readily being able to comprehend that which is in our pereferial visual field. Our brains are built to "pay attention" to what falls within the center field of sight. AMD destroys that as our central vision loss is permanent.

what to do I have no idea, I'm an artist not a medical person.

I wish you LOVE, note not luck but love. I've had to count on friendship to exist, but if learning to let others help me thru their love for me is the "lesson" here then I have to do it.

I'm or was very independent but no longer. I also suffer with two areas of spinal stenosis which put me on a walker and cane.

then again because I get to grow my own pot to help with the pain

it does I'm OFF 6 medications for pain and musculoskeletal crap.

I can't and will not give you false hope. I am here if you need me. Ley me know if you'd like my email.

btw, I cry it helps. Wishing you love

1 like

So sorry, Hollyg, that you are in so much pain. You and people like you make me realise how fortunate I am, having only my eye problem and need no other medication despite my being QUITE OLD!


Dear Hollyg, sending big hugs ((((("))))) ....heard so many positive things about medicinal "pot" ...xxxxxxx

1 like

Hi chdimples. I too have this problem. At my last review with the consultant my visual acuity had improved from 20/63 to 20/50 on the eye chart. The bright light and the short distance from the chart made it appear very clear to a certain point where the dark smudges in my vision began to obliterate part of the letters. At that point I do not not continue with reading the chart even though I could have a guess at a few more. Despite to the so called improvement I do not feel any different when it comes to reading despite my special white light. As my eyes get more tired (after about 30 min) parts of the letters start to disappear and in the end I have to stop. The number of floaters in my central vision make matters worse. If any scarring of the macula has occured in your eyes, the damage is permanent and nothing can be done except using visual aids. I feel for you as you are still in employment. I hope the other staff are aware of your condition and make allowances for you. Take care. x

1 like

Hello Chdimples, yes I am the same as you - I have were macular in both eyes and have had 9 Avastin injections and 2 Eylea & I went to Paris for a second opinion and I felt a cheat as I could read the eye chart nearly to the bottom but when I read a book with magnifier, I have to concentrate so hard and I find I get headaches and my eyes feel tired! so you're not alone. I have a rare type of AMD but carry on as normal as much as I can. I think you need to talk to your Boss and see if he / she can give you a little more time to hit your targets. I hope this helps in a small way.πŸ‘€ 😊


Hi, Yes reading can be a huge strain and a lot slower. My employer provided zoomtext (magnification software) and Dragon (dictatation and reading software) at the time that reading a lot became difficult. Access to Work can provide a review and pay most of the employers costs . Anyone with a disability has the rights to "reasonable adjustments " where an aspect of a job needs to change. E.g. More time being allowed to read or research. It's a continual process of adaptation and readjustment but the software does make it easier. E.g. I might listen to a long article, but switch back to magnification for something short.

1 like

Dear Chdimples,

A couple of observations in case these may apply:

It is important that individuals continue see their optician on a regular basis, as an important part of the eye test is looking at the health of the eye.

In terms of spectacles, if indeed you do wear them, then any qualified optometrist should be able to prescribe spectacles based on the information they collate during the eye examination. Whilst sight is relatively good, then individuals can generally manage with varifocals or bifocals if preferred. However, if there becomes any noticeable impact to sight, then generally single vision lenses are preferable; separate for close up and distance vision. It is then generally also advisable to avoid transition style lenses and opt for anti-glare spectacles instead. Indeed, these are worth considering from the outset. Please see the following link:


and please contact us if you would like suppliers details.

If you are finding that lighting and in particular in this case, the indoor lighting is causing you any problems in terms of glare, then it may be worth considering the anti-glare protection range. Yellow anti-glare protection spectacles are worth considering for indoor use as they do not reduce the amount of light coming in, reduce glare, help to increase contrast and definition.

It is advisable not to change your spectacles, if worn, without first checking with the eye clinic. They will be able inform you when your eyes are stable enough for you to consider visiting the optometrist with a view to changing your spectacles.

If an individual has reached the stage where the optician cannot prescribe stronger lenses in their spectacles, then they can request a referral to an NHS low vision clinic via their GP or ophthalmologist. They prescribe magnifiers for long term loan on the NHS. It is the best first port of call for magnifiers as getting magnifiers is very much like getting spectacles prescribed, in the sense that it is important to get the correct magnification in relation to the eye condition.

It is very important that you have good lighting. Please see the link below:


Lease also see the following link in case it is of some assistance:

"Preparing documents for visually impaired people"


Just to make you aware, we are currently offering free 6 month membership. This is a good way to keep up with current developments. Please ring us if you would like to benefit from this, or join via the following link:


Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of any further help. The Macular Society helpline is open 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday on 0300 3030 111.

Kind regards,


I too suffer this same problem. Reading the chart is very different to real life because it is high contrast black and white. Obviously, it is important in giving a constant value to assess acuity.

Whilst my condition is not wet AMD it has similar characteristics.

My prescription specs take around 2 weeks to be made by which time my vision has always changed slightly consequently, I never seem to get the crystal clear close vision achieved at the opticians. Reading is a chore and anything within 10-12' can be blurred, beyond that I have better than average vision.

Irritating in the extreme. My preferred leisure activity is mountain walking but nowadays I have to take great care on narrow ledges in high, exposed places.


Hi Chdimples, im glad you brought this up as i feel the same, also, at clinic, if im unable to read next line they magnify and brighten the screen...which i think isnt giving a true reading, i may be wrong ......i was even thinking of investing in a magnifier that clips on computer screen or other devises ,,,,,has anyone had any luck with these??????


You may also like...