26 Jul Diabetic Retinopathy: Everything You Need to Know About Diabetes-Related Vision Loss
Sadly, diabetes is an epidemic among Americans of all ages. Though it can cause a wide range of health issues, vision loss is one effect of the disease that is particularly debilitating. That is why so many people are seeking diabetic retinopathy treatment in California.
What is diabetic retinopathy?
This is a condition that affects the blood vessels in the retina, which is the light-sensitive tissue that lines the back of the eye. Diabetic retinopathy is the most common cause of vision loss in patients with diabetes. It is also the number one cause of vision impairment among working-age adults in general.
What causes this condition?
Diabetes can lead to chronically high blood sugar, which can cause severe damage to the blood vessels in the retina. The retina is an integral part of our ability to see, as it detects light and converts it into signals that travel through the optic nerve to the brain to be processed. In patients with diabetic retinopathy, the blood vessels inside the retina leak or bleed, causing vision to be distorted.
What are the symptoms of diabetic retinopathy?
Unfortunately, the early stages of the condition have no symptoms, so the disease often progresses unnoticed until much later. Bleeding from the blood vessels can cause the patient to see “floating” spots.
How is it treated?
Unfortunately, vision loss due to diabetic retinopathy is often irreversible. However, patients who receive diabetic retinopathy treatment in California during the early stages of the disease rarely suffer severe vision loss. The treatment is geared toward reducing swelling and bleeding, including injections of steroids, laser treatments, and vitreoretinal surgery.
Why else might one see “floaters”?
As mentioned above, the appearance of “floaters” is one sign of diabetic retinopathy. However, it is important to note that seeing floaters is not always indicative of diabetic retinopathy. Rather, floaters can be associated with non-diabetes related eye diseases, as well.
About one in seven people with sudden onset of flashes and floaters will experience a retinal tear or detachment. Up to 50% of people who have a retinal tear will have a subsequent detachment. A retinal detachment can occur at any age, but it is more common among people over the age of 40, and affects men more than women. Fortunately, with modern therapy, over 90% can be successfully treated through vitrectomy surgery. Many people have experienced positive results after receiving floaters treatment in California.
If you are interested in learning more about diabetic retinopathy treatment in California or in your local area, call us. Or, if you have any specific questions about diabetic eye disease and other conditions that lead to vision loss, like macular degeneration, feel free to post in the comments section below.