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This Month is National Diabetes Month

Diabetes is the main agent of vision loss of men and women between age twenty and seventy-four. Since 2008, over 4 million men and women in North America living with diabetes were subsequently diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy. Of this number, seventy thousand suffered from acute diabetic retinopathy, which can lead to a complete vision loss.

So, how crucial is it to be examined for diabetic retinopathy?

To start, adults diagnosed with diabetes are at risk. The best way to learn if you have diabetic retinopathy is to have your eye care professional give you a complete eye test yearly. The longer the affliction remains unmonitored, the stronger the danger of diabetes caused vision loss. Speedy treatment will go a long way in halting further loss.

Women who are expecting that are found to have pregnancy-related diabetes have a better possibility of contracting diabetic retinopathy. It is important to have a complete dilated eye test after diagnosis as well.

So why all the panic? Won't there be obvious symptoms of sight deterioration?

The truth is, not always. There are several forms of diabetic retinopathy, and only those in the acute phases are obvious. Progressive diabetes may have no symptoms. Macular edema is another diabetes related disease which results in severe vision deterioration. Both conditions may develop with no obvious symptoms. This is a reason that early recognition is central to stopping any irreversible injury.

A complete analysis will look for symptoms of diabetic retinopathy. There are multiple stages to this exam which will detect the typical clues, including a swelling of the retina, the presence of fatty deposits on the retina, leaky blood vessels, and damaged nerve tissue. What is entailed in a comprehensive eye test?

First of all you will undergo an examination of visual acuity by means of an eye chart which is used to assess how accurately you can see at various distances. This is just like the visual acuity checks given by your optometrist, if you need corrective lenses.

While giving a dilated eye exam, the eye doctor puts drops in your eyes to amplify your pupils. Not a particularly beloved test by the squeamish, but it can save you blindness in 10-15 years. This practice makes it easier to examine more of the inside of your eyes to check for specific clues that imply the presence of diabetic retinopathy. The fleeting discomfort could save your vision.

When it comes to your sight, even a little complacency can lead to irreversible deterioration. If you are diabetic, it is necessary to book an eye exam with your optometrist today.


Please be advised that all office visits including exams, frame selections, repairs, pick-ups, and drop-offs are by appointment only. We are required to wear a face mask in our office and ask that you bring yours to your appointment.

We are happy to serve our patients and community and are committed to keeping you as safe as possible.

Thank you.

The Shuswap Optometric Team