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Britain's Dame Judi Dench losing eyesight

Feb. 18, 2012 at 12:20 PM   |   Comments

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LONDON, Feb. 18 (UPI) -- British actress Judi Dench has said friends must read film scripts to her because she is gradually losing her eyesight to macular degeneration.

"I can't read scripts any more before because of the trouble with my eyes and so somebody comes and reads them to me, like telling me a story," she said.

The actress, who won an Oscar for her role in "Shakespeare in Love," said she can no longer see faces in front of her due to the condition, The Daily Telegraph reported Saturday.

"You get used to it. I've got lenses and glasses and things and very bright light helps. I can do a crossword if it's bright sunshine, but if a cloud comes out the next minute I can't see anything," she said.

Dench's mother also suffered the disease, which typically affects the elderly, the newspaper said.

Dench, 77, says she has been losing her battle with macular degeneration and has little eyesight left.

Age-related macular degeneration, known as AMD, affects nearly 240,000 people in Britain and is the leading cause of blindness in the world, the Mirror said.

Dench told The Telegraph injections seem to have arrested the degeneration in her eyes and she has no plans to retire.

Dench will be returning to her role as M in the next James Bond film, "Skyfall."

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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