Diabetes may be one of the most well-known diseases on the planet. Despite this, the majority of people are quite unaware of its potential to cause severe visual impairment and even blindness.
Due to that potential, our diabetic eye exam is one which goes into extra detail looking for small signs and indicators of both diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema, aka DME.
The use of powerful and cutting-edge technology to take exceptionally detailed images of the retina allows us to examine the internal structure of the eye to make an accurate and precise diagnosis of any conditions or abnormalities present. Our diabetic eye exams are enhanced by applying eye drops which serve to dilate your pupils and allow improved visual access to the interior of the eye for our imaging equipment.
Suffice to say, if there are any unusual developments in your eye, we will spot them, and we’ll spot them early if you attend your annual eye exams as recommended.
There are two main eye diseases to which diabetics must be particularly alert: diabetic retinopathy and DME. Diabetic retinopathy comes in two different forms – proliferative and nonproliferative, while DME is essentially an offshoot of diabetic retinopathy.
This is where the blood vessels of the retina are weakened over time and gradually begin to leak blood and other fluids into the eyeball. This is a dangerous disease as it can severely limit eyesight by obscuring all central vision. Generally classified as either mild, moderate or severe, the amount of visual impairment can vary dramatically from patient to patient depending on how early the disease is diagnosed. It should not cause blindness.Proliferative
This is the more advanced stage of the disease. Rather than the blood vessels simply leaking fluids into the eye – which does also happened here – new blood vessels begin to grow into the retina. These new blood vessels may form scar tissue in the eyeball. This scar tissue can eventually contract and pull against the retina and threaten a retinal detachment.
As a result of the fluid entering the eye, it is common to have dark spots or strings floating in your vision. You are also likely to experience blurred vision, poor color perception and possibly dark or empty areas in your vision which can be difficult to notice.
The most severe symptom would be blindness – if you experience any substantial vision loss then you must contact our clinic immediately for an emergency appointment. Sight lost to diseases tends to stay lost and must be investigated as soon as physically possible.
This is a disease which is caused by diabetic retinopathy and is experienced by around 10% of individuals suffering from that condition. When fluid builds up in the macula as a result of rupturing blood vessels around the retina, it obscures your central vision and causes everything in front of your eyes to become hazy, blurry or otherwise impaired.Eventually this leakage of fluids will cause the retina to swell and further impair your vision.