Amsler grid

Normal Amsler grid
Amsler grid with wavy lines

One of the easiest ways to screen for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is to use an Amsler grid. An Amsler grid is a chart with lines and a dot at the centre. Your doctor can give you one to use at home.

If you have dry AMD, check your vision in each eye every day or as often as your doctor advises. It only takes a few seconds.

Cover one eye. Then, using your other eye, look at the first grid. Repeat with the opposite eye covered. If you have macular degeneration, the lines may appear wavy or curved, or you may see a blank or dark area in the middle of the grid.

In the second grid, the lines around the centre are wavy and distorted. This is one example of how the straight lines in the grid above might appear to someone with macular degeneration.

The distortion or blind spot (scotoma) you actually see may be different from what is shown in the grid picture.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Christopher Joseph Rudnisky, MD, MPH, FRCSC - Ophthalmology

Current as ofMarch 1, 2018

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