Fortunately, the National Eye Institute (NEI) says that the risk of vision loss in patients with macular degeneration can be reduced dramatically simply by taking specific eye vitamins. The NEI-sponsored Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) showed that the rate of severe vision loss can be decreased by as much as 35% by taking a specific combination of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Copper, and Zinc. The levels of these vitamins cannot be achieved through diet alone, so vitamin supplementation is critical.
Unfortunately, many people who should be taking a macula vitamin supplement aren’t doing so. Of the 8 million people whom the NEI estimates would benefit from taking a macular health vitamin, studies have shown that less than half are taking a vitamin consistent with the AREDS study. Confusion about different formulations and affordability are two of the leading causes of poor compliance. Improved compliance could prevent approximately 300,000 people from developing the advanced form of the disease over five years.
Now, however, a new company is set to revolutionize the eye vitamin industry and take on this public health issue. CovalentMedical, LLC, was started in 2011 by a group of over 400 macular degeneration specialists to manufacture and distribute an affordable, high-quality, physician-recommended macular health eye vitamin called Focus MaculaPro (http://www.focusvitamins.com). The medical doctors who founded the company represent approximately 50% of the retina specialists in private practice in the United States and are dedicated to fighting macular degeneration. As macular degeneration experts, they collectively treat hundreds of thousands of patients annually and see first-hand the devastation that macular degeneration can cause.
The physicians behind Focus MaculaPro were frustrated by the lack of good vitamin options for their patients. Some macular health vitamins have either inadequate levels of the vitamins proven to prevent vision loss or contain ingredients that are not well-researched by the NEI. Many eye vitamin products cost $30, $40, or $50 or more per month. Focus Macula Pro, however, will be sold in doctors’ offices for only $10-15 per month to promote more widespread eye vitamin usage in the at-risk population.
David Williams, MD, MBA, immediate past-president of the American Society of Retina Specialists states “As macular degeneration specialists, we recognize the critical role that eye vitamins play in ocular health. Now with Focus MaculaPro our patients and the public have access to a high-quality, research-based, affordable eye vitamin.”
While Focus MaculaPro is less expensive than many other brands, it is an extremely high-quality product. Focus MaculaPro is manufactured in a facility registered by the Food and Drug Administration and laboratory tested to assure quality and safety. Additionally, Focus MaculaPro is based on the formula used in the AREDS eye vitamin study. Unlike other products on the market, important vitamins are included in amounts indicated by the AREDS study and untested supplements, like bilberry and selenium, are not utilized.
The doctors of Covalent Medical hope that by working together as a group to produce a high-quality, science-based, affordable macular health vitamin like Focus MaculaPro they can improve compliance, promote eye health, and save the United States healthcare system millions of dollars.
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Covalent Medical is the largest commercial organization of retina specialists in the U.S. Covalent Medical produces research-based eye vitamins that are sold directly through eye professionals and through their website at http://www.focusvitamins.com.