Eye Care is Extremely Important for Diabetics
Diabetic retinopathy is damage to the retina caused by diabetes, which can eventually lead to blindness. Diabetic retinopathy affects up to 80% of patients who have had diabetes for 10 years or more. Research indicates that at least 90% of these cases could be helped with early detection, proper treatment and regular eye exams.
Diabetics should have a dilated eye exam every year to stay proactive with their eye health.
Signs of Diabetic Retinopathy
- Blurred Vision
- New Floaters
- Sudden loss of vision
- Double vision
High blood sugar can damage blood vessels in the retina, causing them to leak fluid or bleed. This causes the retina to swell and form deposits. In later stages, new blood vessels grow on the surface of the retina causing serious vision problems.
A different condition, macular edema, occurs when fluid begins collecting in the macula, the most light-sensitive part of the retina.
Diabetic retinopathy can be managed several ways, in most cases, with laser surgery to seal off leaking blood vessels and remove unwanted tissue. Laser photocoagulation is painless and is performed as an outpatient procedure.
In certain situations, your ophthalmologist may choose to treat your macular edema with injections of medicine in your eye. These special shots of medicine—called intravitreal injections—may be steroids or other medications. They are designed to shrink the swelling of the macula or reduce neovascularization.
If you are diabetic and are experiencing any changes in your vision, contact us. Remember that early detection is key to preserving your eyesight, so call today to schedule an eye exam.