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Your eyes with diabetes – our responsibility!

Facts about diabetes and vision

What can diabetes mellitus do to the eye and vision?

In diabetes, there is a risk over time of getting a disease in the eye that can cause impaired vision.

There is an increased risk of developing retinal disease, glaucoma, and cataracts. Diabetes can lead to poor blood circulation in the smallest blood vessels and, because of this, cause retinal disease. Leakage from the small blood vessels can cause swelling of the retina, which in turn causes poor vision. Clogged small blood vessels can also lead to a decrease in vision. There may be growth of diseased blood vessels inside the eye that may cause bleeding into the eye and a risk of retinal detachment.

Many patients with diabetes, however, have minor bleeding in the retina without causing a decrease in vision.

There are currently several treatments for retinal disease as a result of diabetes. There are laser treatment, medication injection into the eye, surgery outside the eye or surgery inside the eye.

One can reduce the risk of disease development by having good blood sugar control, as well as good blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Regularly checking the retinas with a photo is very important in order to provide treatment early enough.

Patients with type 1 diabetes are recommended to have an ophthalmologist consultation within 5 years of diagnosis. Patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes should undergo a retinal examination once the diagnosis is determined.

All patients should have regular check-ups with retinal photography throughout their lives. In case of normal findings, you will get an examination every 2 years.

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