Did you know that diabetic eye disease is the leading cause of blindness in adults aged 20-74? November is Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month, so it’s the perfect time to learn more about this condition and what you can do to protect your vision.
What is Diabetic Eye Disease?
Diabetic eye disease is a group of eye problems that can occur in people with diabetes. These problems include diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, and glaucoma.
Diabetes damages the blood vessels in the retina, which can lead to diabetic retinopathy—the most common form of diabetic eye disease. Diabetic retinopathy occurs when the tiny blood vessels in the retina become damaged and leak fluid or blood. This can cause vision loss or even blindness.
Cataracts are another common complication of diabetes. Cataracts occur when the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, making it difficult to see. While cataracts are common as people get older, they can develop sooner in diabetics.
Glaucoma is a condition that damages the optic nerve, which carries information from your eyes to your brain. People with diabetes are at increased risk for glaucoma.
What are the Symptoms of Diabetic Eye Disease?
Diabetic eye disease often has no early warning signs or symptoms. That’s why it’s so important for people with diabetes to have regular eye exams. During an eye exam at Primary Eye Care Associates of Arlington and South Main, our doctor will examine your eyes for signs of diabetic eye disease and other conditions.
What is the Treatment for Diabetic Eye Disease?
There is no cure for diabetic eye disease, but treatment can help slow its progression and prevent vision loss.
- If you have diabetic retinopathy, treatment may include laser surgery, injections into the eye, or surgery to remove leaking blood vessels from the retina.
- If you have cataracts, treatment may include surgery to remove the cloudy lens and replace it with an artificial lens.
- If you have glaucoma, treatment may include medicine, laser surgery, or conventional surgery to relieve pressure on the optic nerve.
Schedule an Eye Exam
If you have diabetes, it’s important to have regular eye exams so that any problems can be detected early and treated accordingly. Treatment for diabetic eye disease can help slow its progression and prevent vision loss. So don’t wait—schedule an appointment at Primary Eye Care Associates of Arlington and South Main today!