Diabetic retinopathy is an eye disease that impacts only those with diabetes. It happens when the fragile vascular network that supplies the retina – the light sensitive tissue at the back of the eye that aids us with our vision – starts to swell or leak. During the initial stages of the disease, there could be nothing noticeable happening, so if you are diabetic, it’s critical to have a minimum of one eye exam a year.
Once there are symptoms of diabetic retinopathy, they often include the following: dark or black spots in your visual field, or blurry vision, and it increases over time. This is because there is bleeding at the back of the eye, which impedes a clear image from being transmitted from the retina to the brain.
You are at risk for developing diabetic retinopathy, whether you have type 1, type 2, or even just gestational diabetes. The longer you have had the disease, the greater the risk. Keeping your blood sugar levels under control is critical to prevent vision loss, and this could necessitate a trip back to your primary care doctor.
Treatment options for diabetic retinopathy often include vitrectomy, replacing the inner gel-like substance that supports the eyeball structure, and laser surgery.
Stop by our Lombard, IL office for more information on treatment options at Clarity Eye Care.