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Home » Eye Care Services » Management of Ocular Diseases » Treating Diabetic Retinopathy

Treating Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is an eye disease that only affects diabetics. It occurs when the fragile vascular network that supplies the retina – the light sensitive tissue at the back of the eye that helps us see – begins to swell or leak. During the beginning stages of the disease, there may be no noticeable symptoms, so it’s important to have your eyes checked at least once a year, if you have diabetes.

Once symptoms of diabetic retinopathy do develop, they can include: dark or black spots in your visual field, or blurry vision, and it increases over time. This is a result of bleeding at the back of the eye, which prevents a clear image from being transmitted from the retina to the brain.

Whether you have type 1, type 2, or even just gestational diabetes, you are at risk for developing diabetic retinopathy. The longer you have had the disease, the greater the risk. It is essential to keep your blood sugar levels under control to prevent vision loss, and this may require a trip back to your primary care physician.

Treating diabetic retinopathy can include vitrectomy, replacing the inner gel-like substance that supports the eyeball structure, and laser surgery.

Diabetic Focus on Diet - transcript

Hi, I’m Dr. Brown. November is diabetes-related eye disease awareness month. So, I’m coming at you all month to give you tips on how to prevent diabetes complications in your eye and even diabetes all together ‘cause that’s the goal, isn’t it? So, diet. Diet is so important. You can have insulin, you can have metformin, you can have all the drugs that are helping you control your insulin levels, your blood sugar but diet is your power.

Making sure to stay away from processed foods, sugar specifically high fructose corn syrup, soda, sweet drinks especially if you are a diabetic. Clear liquid, water, water, water, filtered water as well super important for your body to have clean water. Then we want to load you up with the vitamins, nutrients and minerals that you need. Vegetables, vegetables, vegetables, fruits are good in a little bit lower quantity because they do have sugar and lean proteins.

November is Diabetes Awareness Month - transcript

Alright, I’m Dr. Brown and I want to come to you and tell you that November is diabetes-related eye disease awareness month. So, all month we’re gonna be coming at you and telling you ways to reduce: 1) Chances of getting diabetes 2) Specifically if you have diabetes, your chances of reducing complications especially in your eye because diabetes is the leading cause of preventable eye disease in this country and it is my mission to prevent it.

We’re going to prevent it together. So, one of the major ways to prevent it is exercise, moving your body. Find something you like to do, do it, 30 minutes 5 times a week. The reason this is important to you especially if you have diabetes because when you exercise it makes your body take up the glucose, take up the sugar out of your blood vessels get it in to the muscles in to where it can be used for energy and out of the blood vessels where it can be toxic for your body. So, exercise, exercise!

How to lower your A1C - transcript

Hi, I’m Dr. Brown and today I want to talk to you about diabetes. So, diabetes is the leading cause of preventable blindness in this country and complications in the eye, you can get bleeding and leaking from the blood vessels. We know now that we can prevent complications from diabetes by keeping your A1C under control.

How do you do that? By diet, making sure that you have a diet full of whole real foods, lots of plants, lots of fruits, lots of whole proteins, lean proteins, exercise is a great way to decrease your A1C. Managing your stress levels is another great way, making sure to keep your body hydrated and definitely if you have diabetes, get your yearly eye exams.

Your Eyes are the Window to Your Soul - transcript

Hi, I’m Dr. Brown and today I want to talk about how your eyes are the window to the soul. Now, I know that is really esoteric just calm down, stay with me for a second. How I really look at it is your eyes are a window to tell us the status and health of your entire body. Everything we do affects our brain. We don’t see with our eyes, we see with our brain and I’m always repeating that. Our overall health, we can tell the status of our overall health by looking in the eye.

So, getting eye exams every year is so important because we can prevent things before they make manifest as disease in the body. We can see signs in the eye, signs of inflammation, signs of high blood pressure, signs of diabetes, signs of high cholesterol. All of these things we can see in the eye before you actually have symptoms so we can stop it in its tracks before you end up at the doctor being put on medication. We can educate you on lifestyle. There is so much we can do to prevent disease today.

Prevent or even reverse diabetes - transcript

Hi, I’m Dr. Brown and today I’m going to talk to you about diabetes. So, a lot of people have the notion that diabetes runs in their families so I have a lot of patients that come and they’re like “Diabetes runs in my family so I have diabetes. Nothing I can do about it.”

Well guess what, news flash even if you have diabetes that runs in your family that does not mean that you have to get it. There’s so many things we could do to prevent diabetes and that is so important to keep your vision healthy for a lifetime. So, come on in and schedule your eye exam to find out how you can prevent or even reverse your diabetes.

  • Unlike a routine eye exam that assesses your visual system and eye health, anyone who was diagnosed with type 1 or type 2 diabetes requires an additional test for their eye exam.