Diabetes is the primary agent of impaired vision for men and women aged 20-74 years. In just the last four years, over four million adults in North America living with diabetes were tested positive for blindness caused by diabetes. Of this group, seventy thousand had acute diabetic retinopathy, which can lead to irreversible blindness.
While not everyone is at risk of diabetic retinopathy, it is essential to be aware of the relation between the disease and vision loss.
Having diabetes is the first risk factor. Anyone in this category should ensure that they have an eye exam regularly. The longer the disease remains unchecked, the greater the danger of diabetes related vision loss. Speedy treatment is the key to preventing further damage.
Women who are expecting that have been found to have gestational diabetes have a higher likelihood of developing diabetic retinopathy. It is crucial to undergo a comprehensive dilated eye test after diagnosis as well.
You may be curious as to why all the worry? Wouldn't you notice signs of blindness?
The truth is no. There are different forms of diabetic retinopathy, and only those which are in the acute stages are obvious. Proliferative diabetes may have no symptoms. Macular edema is another diabetes related disease which results in severe vision deterioration. Both conditions can develop without noticeable signs. This is a reason that early detection is critical to halting any permanent deterioration.
An extensive assessment will detect signs of diabetic retinopathy. There are various phases to this exam which will detect the tell-tale clues, such as a swelling of the retina, the presence of fatty deposits on the retina, leaky blood vessels, and damaged nerve tissue. What is involved in a complete eye test?
The eye doctor will perform an examination of visual acuity by means of an eye chart that is used to determine how accurately you are able to see at different distances. This is similar to the visual acuity examinations given by your optometrist, if you need corrective lenses.
During a dilated eye exam, the optometrist puts drops in your eyes to amplify your pupils. Though not a favorite of the squeamish, it can stop a loss of autonomy further down the road. This procedure makes it feasible to monitor a larger part of the interior portion of your eyes to identify for unique symptoms that indicate the likelihood of diabetic retinopathy. The fleeting discomfort could save your vision.
Take care of your sight. Even a little hesitation might cause serious loss. If you are living with diabetes, it is necessary to book an eye exam with an eye doctor without further delay.