What Is Diabetic Retinopathy?
Diabetic retinopathy is a concerning eye condition that damages blood vessels within the back of the eye or the retina. Often a result of high blood sugar levels or diabetes-related complications, diabetic retinopathy can cause these blood vessels to swell, leak, or become altogether blocked, preventing the proper flow of blood and delivery of vital nutrients into the eye. When this occurs, several eye concerns may result, including retinal detachment, glaucoma, macular edema, vision loss, and blindness. Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy may not become evident until the condition reaches the advanced stages, making routine eye exams extremely important for diabetic patients. As a full-service ophthalmology center, Rothchild Eye Institute offers diabetic retinopathy diagnostic care and diabetic retinopathy treatment in Delray Beach and Palm Beach County, FL.
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What Are the Symptoms of Diabetic Retinopathy?
Many individuals do not experience any signs or symptoms of diabetic retinopathy during the early stages. As the condition progresses, some people may begin to experience symptoms that come and go. The symptoms of diabetic retinopathy include:
- Seeing faded colors or new color blindness
- Dark spots or streaking in your vision
- Difficulty reading or seeing distant objects
- Blurred or distorted vision
- Poor night vision
What are the benefits of Diabetic Retinopathy treatment?
With diabetic retinopathy, the condition can't be fully cured. However, with the proper treatment, the condition can stop your diabetes and vision impairment from getting worse. The benefits from treatment may include:
- A reduction in swelling
- A reduction in fluctuating vision
- Increase in blood flow to the eyes
- A decrease in blurred vision or floaters
To schedule your eye check up for a diabetic patient in Delray beach, FL, contact our office. We can schedule a diabetic retinopathy screening test to see if you'd benefit from treatment.
Am I At Risk Of Diabetic Retinopathy?
Whether you have type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, or gestational diabetes, you could be at risk for diabetic retinopathy. The longer you have diabetes, the greater your risk gets. Additionally, individuals who develop diabetes during pregnancy (gestational diabetes) are at greater risk for this condition and should have their eyes dilated and examined as soon as possible. Additional risk factors may include:
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar levels
- High cholesterol
- Tobacco use
If you find yourself with one or more of these risk factors, contact our Delray Beach, FL office to learn about the latest treatments for diabetic retinopathy.
How Is Diabetic Retinopathy Treated?
There are two general stages of the condition: non-proliferative diabetic retinopathy (early stage) and proliferative diabetic retinopathy (advanced stage). Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy may include changes in vision, vision loss, blurry vision, floaters, or dark spots. A comprehensive eye exam is the first step in diagnosing diabetic retinopathy. While there is no cure for the condition, treatment generally centers on managing symptoms and reducing the risk of progression. Treatment modalities may include vitrectomy, laser surgery, and anti-VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) medications. Along with any recommended care plan, it is important to manage diabetes by maintaining an ideal weight, eating a nutritious diet, and controlling blood sugar levels.
Diabetic Retinopathy FAQ
Is there a cure for diabetic retinopathy?
There is currently no cure for diabetic retinopathy, but the damage can be prevented and treated. Regular visits to your ophthalmologist for diabetic retinopathy treatment in Delay Beach, FL, are vital to preserving your vision. Contact Rothchild Eye Institute for a diabetic retinopathy specialist.
How is diabetic retinopathy detected?
If you have diabetes in Delray Beach, FL, then regular visits to your ophthalmologist for comprehensive eye exams can detect diabetic retinopathy before you develop any symptoms. Our expert ophthalmologists in Delray Beach, FL, can perform tests and examinations that allow them to see your retinas and determine if you suffer from diabetic retinopathy.
What are the possible complications of diabetic retinopathy?
Diabetic retinopathy can lead to several other vision-threatening conditions such as:
- Vitreous hemorrhage
- Diabetic macular edema
- Retinal detachment.
If you have diabetes, seeing a diabetic retinopathy specialist regularly can help preserve your vision and prevent further damage.
Prevent Diabetic Retinopathy
Maintaining routine eye care is essential for patients who have diabetes. Identifying conditions, such as diabetic retinopathy, early on can help preserve vision and minimize damage to the retina and other eye structures. If you are affected by diabetes, please schedule an appointment at Rothchild Eye Institute in Delray Beach, FL to meet with our retina specialist. We are dedicated to helping you preserve your vision by providing excellence in ophthalmology care.