Objective: To forecast age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and its consequences in the United States through the year 2050 with different treatment scenarios.
Methods: We simulated cases of early AMD, choroidal neovascularization (CNV), geographic atrophy (GA), and AMD-attributable visual impairment and blindness with 5 universal treatment scenarios: (1) no treatment; (2) focal laser and photodynamic therapy (PDT) for CNV; (3) vitamin prophylaxis at early-AMD incidence with focal laser/PDT for CNV; (4) no vitamin prophylaxis followed by focal laser treatment for extra and juxtafoveal CNV and anti-vascular endothelial growth factor treatment; and (5) vitamin prophylaxis at early-AMD incidence followed by CNV treatment, as in scenario 4.
Results: Cases of early AMD increased from 9.1 million in 2010 to 17.8 million in 2050 across all scenarios. In non-vitamin-receiving scenarios, cases of CNV and GA increased from 1.7 million in 2010 to 3.8 million in 2050 (25% lower in vitamin-receiving scenarios). Cases of visual impairment and blindness increased from 620 000 in 2010 to 1.6 million in 2050 when given no treatment and were 2.4%, 22.0%, 16.9%, and 34.5% lower in scenarios 2, 3, 4, and 5, respectively.
Conclusion: Prevalence of AMD will increase substantially by 2050, but the use of new therapies can mitigate its effects.