February Newsletter 284

June Brown reveals why she can’t go out socially

June has suffered from macular degeneration for 10 years and despite a revolutionary operation in 2017 that saved her from going blind and helped her ­recognise faces again, things are now getting worse.


Alexa helps couple enjoy bedtime stories with their son

A partially sighted Belfast mum and her blind partner have praised Amazon’s Alexa for making family life easier. Louise Neeson and her fiancé Joe Kenny’s young son Oisin can see. But because Joe can’t and Louise has lost some of her sight, the 37-year-old said Alexa has been a real help with bedtime stories, music, lights and even the morning alarm since entering their life a year ago. Louise said: “Alexa is a fantastic device, it is so practical for us to have in the house”.


A blood test could diagnose the world’s most common cause of blindness years before symptoms develop

A blood test could help diagnose the world’s most common cause of blindness – years before symptoms develop. Age-related macular degeneration patients have much higher levels of the FHR-4 protein, scientists have discovered. The breakthrough could lead to earlier detection when drugs are more likely to be effective and the development of medications that target it.