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A Johns Hopkins researcher has developed a surgical technique that may restore sight in some people with age-related macular degeneration, the most common cause of blindness in people over 55.

Blindness occurs from bleeding vessels underneath the retina at the back of the eye, which relays images to the brain. The procedure developed by Dr. Eugene de Juan has restored some sight in 20 percent of 40 patients, he reported in the American Journal of Ophthalmology.

Surgery involves moving healthy retinal tissue away from the underlying bleeding area so it can again transmit light images to the brain.