November 2017 The Unseen Dangers of Diabetes
Diabetic eye disease is the leading cause of blindness among adults. It occurs when small blood vessels in the retina weaken and leak, or when abnormal blood vessels grow in the retina. The result is impaired vision and, potentially, blindness.
In 2016, Optometrists identified diabetes-related manifestations in more than 320,000 patients who were unaware they had diabetes, according to American Optometric Association (AOA) President Christopher J. Quinn, OD, in an AOA press release.
Anyone with diabetes is at risk for diabetic eye disease. But often there are no symptoms until the disease is advanced. For that reason, we recommend that anyone with – or at risk for – diabetes have a comprehensive, dilated eye exam at least once a year. Online vision apps only check for refractive errors such as myopia, hyperopia or astigmatism and cannot detect diabetes, which is why a full comprehensive dilated eye exam is so important for your eye health. Early detection and treatment are the key to maintaining healthy vision.