Did you know that diabetic retinopathy is the most common cause of vision loss among people with diabetes, and a leading cause of blindness among working-age adults? It is also one of the four leading causes of blindness in the elderly.
People with diabetes are also 40% more likely to develop glaucoma (a silent, painless killer of vision), and 60% more likely to develop cataracts (the most common cause of reversible blindness in the world). The good news is, patients who receive regular eye exams can often catch potential issues while they’re minor and start treatment before the problem worsens.
Your eye doctor, through a comprehensive eye exam, can detect the early signs of diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts.
Vision lost to diabetic retinopathy is sometimes irreversible. However, early detection and treatment can reduce the risk of blindness by 95%. Because diabetic retinopathy often lacks early symptoms, people with diabetes should get a comprehensive dilated eye exam at least once a year. People with diabetic retinopathy may need eye exams more frequently. Women with diabetes who become pregnant should have a comprehensive dilated eye exam as soon as possible. Additional exams during pregnancy may be needed.
The American Diabetes Association has some great resources on eye care for patients with diabetes: