The symptoms of a macular hole are quite similar to those of macular degeneration. It is also most common in people aged 50 to 70. However, the conditions are quite different, and you should see an eye specialist if you suspect either.
A macular hole generally only affects your central vision, so your peripheral or ‘side’ vision will remain unaffected. You may have difficulty with reading and close work, and you may notice grey or black spots, or blank areas, in your vision. Macular holes usually affect one eye rather than both. However, both eyes can be affected by macular holes.
Macular holes usually develop over time, so you may not notice any symptoms until your vision is affected. Early signs include blurring and distortion of your vision. You may notice straight lines (such as window frames, telegraph poles or lines of text) appearing bent or wavy.
The Amsler Grid is a simple test that will help you determine if your vision is distorted in this way.
An Amsler Grid with straight lines as seen by a normal-sighted person
A person with macular problems may notice distortion of the grid pattern, such as bent lines, irregular box shapes or a grey shaded area.
The size and location of the macular hole will determine how much it affects your vision. There are also three stages of macular hole, and vision will generally deteriorate as the condition worsens.