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3-D Eye Online - Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes that is caused by changes in the blood vessels of the eye. When blood vessels are damaged they may leak fluid or blood. They can also grow abnormal fragile, brush-like branches and scar tissue. This can blur or distort images.

Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of new blindness among adults in the United States. People with untreated diabetes are said to be 25 times more at risk for blindness than the general population. The longer a person has diabetes, the more the risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. Good blood sugar control is helpful in preventing the eye disease.

Laser surgery or special eye medications can sometimes be used if diabetic retinopathy is detected early. Additional surgical procedures can also be helpful in the battle against permanent loss of vision. Diabetics should be checked at least once a year by an ophthalmologist.