Diabetes & The Eye

Diabetes is one of the most common health problems in the United States today, affecting more than 30 million people. This disease can have negative effects on nearly every part of the body, including the eyes.

Patients with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes are at risk for developing diabetic eye disease. The longer that you’ve had diabetes, or the less your blood sugars are under control, the higher the potential for developing eye problems.

Diabetes can affect the eyes in multiple ways. Patients with diabetes often develop cataracts at younger ages, and they are more likely to get glaucoma. But the most serious complication of diabetes in the eye is diabetic retinopathy. In this condition, the blood vessels of the retina (the wallpaper on the inside back of the eye) get damaged, leading to bleeding and swelling inside of the eye. If the diabetic retinopathy is significant, it can require treatment with laser procedures, injections into the eye, and/or surgery. If diabetic retinopathy goes untreated, it can result in permanent vision loss.

It is very important to have your eyes examined at least once per year if you have diabetes. We can’t stress this enough! Yearly exams allow your eye doctor to keep tabs on any changes in your eyes and treat problems as early as possible to prevent vision loss.

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At New England Vision, we take the responsibility of performing diabetic eye exams very seriously. We’re here to help you keep your eyes healthy and minimize your chances of vision problems. If you live in Vermont, northern New York, or western New Hampshire and would like to schedule a diabetic eye examination, contact us today.

Visit the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s EyeSmart® website to learn more about Diabetic Eye Disease.