What Is Macular Telangiectasia?

Macular telangiectasia (MacTel) is a disease affecting the macula, causing loss of central vision. MacTel develops when there are problems with the tiny blood vessels around the fovea.

There are two types of MacTel, and each affects the blood vessels differently.

Type 2 MacTel

The most common form is Type 2 MacTel. The tiny blood vessels around the fovea leak, become dilated (widen), or both. In some cases, new blood vessels form under the retina and they can also break or leak. Fluid from leaking blood vessels causes the macula to swell or thicken. This is a condition called macular edema, which affects your central vision. Also, scar tissue can sometimes form over the macula and the fovea, causing loss of detail vision. Type 2 affects both eyes but not necessarily with the same severity.

Type 1 MacTel

In Type 1 MacTel, the blood vessels become dilated. This forms tiny aneurysms, causing swelling and damaging macular cells. The disease almost always occurs in one eye, which differentiates it from Type 2.