Early manifestations of macular degeneration may involve modifiable risk factors.

According to a study in the June issue of Archives of Ophthalmology factors such as smoking and HDL cholesterol have a dramatic effect on AMD. Of those studied who smoked 11 or more packs of cigarettes per week had an increased risk of early AMD by two-thirds and every increase in 5mg/dL increase in HDL lowered the risk by almost 10%