Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetes, which occurs when your body does not produce enough insulin or doesn’t respond to the insulin that it makes, can cause a range of problems within your body - including in your eyes.

There are several types of ways that diabetes can affect the eyes - some more serious than others. These can be caused by a variety of factors including damage to the blood vessels in the retina and sugar levels affecting vision.

If not treated properly, eye conditions can lead to permanent vision loss. However, not every person with diabetes will develop problems with their eyes, but it should be monitored regularly by your optometrist.

Diabetic retinopathy is the most serious problem that can arise due to diabetes. It occurs because diabetes can affect the tiny blood vessels in the eye causing them to leak which can result in blurred vision.

It is estimated that around 40 per cent of people with Type 1 diabetes and 20 per cent with Type 2 diabetes will develop some sort of diabetic retinopathy in their lifetime.

Other ways that you can reduce your risk of problems include:

  • Controlling your blood sugar levels
  • Controlling your blood pressure
  • Keeping fit and healthy, including not smoking
  • Maintaining a healthy body weight

If you have diabetes it is particularly important to have regular yearly eye examinations. At Outlook Eye Centre we now offer optomap® Ultra-Wide Digital Retinal Imaging which allows Shannon to detect any areas of the retina which are affected by diabetes which can’t be seen during a regular eye examination.