Diabetic Retinopathy Screenings at Clarkson Eyecare

Diabetic Retinopathy XRay

Our Clarkson Eyecare Diabetic Retinopathy Specialists

There are over 425 million people in the world who have either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. If you have diabetes, you may be at risk for a sight threatening disease called diabetic retinopathy. 

Did you know diabetic retinopathy can lead to vision problems and even blindness if left untreated? When your body is faced with high blood sugar levels it causes damage to the blood vessels located in the retina. High blood sugar levels cause the blood vessels to swell and leak. These changes can cause vision loss in diabetic patients of all ages. 

It is estimated that 80% of diabetic patients will eventually develop some stage of diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy is fairly common in diabetics. The longer you have had diabetes, the greater your risk factor is.

Those with poor control of their blood sugar have an increased risk of developing retinopathy. For every 1% increase in hemoglobin A1c over 7%, there is a 50% increased risk in developing proliferative diabetic retinopathy. 

The team at Clarkson Eyecare are experts at diagnosing diabetic retinopathy and helping patients manage their condition.

Woman having retinal scan during complete eye exam

Find Clarkson Eyecare Diabetic Retinopathy Screenings Near You

Clarkson Eyecare has diabetic retinopathy specialists in Missouri, Illinois, Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Texas, New Jersey, Virginia, Georgia, and Florida. Click to find a location near you.

What Is Diabetic Retinopathy?

Those who have had diabetes for an extended period of time are more likely to develop diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy is the most common form of diabetic eye disease.  It occurs when high blood sugar levels cause changes that damage blood vessels in the retina. These changes can cause swelling to the vessels (macular edema) and leak fluid into the rear of the eye. If diabetic retinopathy goes untreated it will gradually become more serious and as it progresses it can  affect your vision and lead to blindness. Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of acquired blindness in patients over age 65.

Diabetic macular edema (DME) occurs when there is fluid build up in the  macula which is the central portion of the retina that we use whenever we look straight ahead. This area of the retina is responsible for our clearest vision. Diabetic macular edema is responsible for about 50% of vision loss in patients with diabetic retinopathy. If you have diabetes, you should have a dilated eye examination at least once every year to check for diabetic retinopathy.

What Causes Diabetic Retinopathy?

Those who have had diabetes for an extended period of time are more likely to develop diabetic retinopathy. 

Diabetic retinopathy is the most common form of diabetic eye disease.  It occurs when high blood sugar levels cause changes that damage blood vessels in the retina. These changes can cause swelling to the vessels (macular edema) and leak fluid into the rear of the eye. If diabetic retinopathy goes untreated it will gradually become more serious. As it progresses, it can affect your vision and lead to blindness. Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of acquired blindness in patients over age 65.

What is Diabetic Macular Edema (DME)?

Diabetic macular edema (DME) occurs when there is fluid buildup in the macula which is the central portion of the retina that we use whenever we look straight ahead. This area of the retina is responsible for our clearest vision. Diabetic macular edema is responsible for about 50% of vision loss in patients with diabetic retinopathy. If you have diabetes, you should have a dilated eye examination at least once every year to check for diabetic retinopathy.

Should I Get Screened for Diabetic Retinopathy?

If you have any of the following risk factors it is important that you have a retinopathy screening examination as soon as possible.

  • Protein in urine

  • Poor blood glucose control (Fasting blood sugar above 100, A1c over 7% or any blood glucose reading over 200)

  • Raised fats in the blood

  • High blood pressure

Man smiling drinking coffee reading tablet

If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes you are at risk for developing diabetic retinopathy. Because the condition is caused by increased blood sugar, monitoring your blood glucose levels closely, watching your diet, and exercising is important.

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, schedule an appointment with your nearest Clarkson Eyecare diabetic retinopathy screening specialist.

Advanced Treatment Options for Diabetic Retinopathy

Our doctors at Clarkson Eyecare are highly skilled in diagnosing patients with diabetic retinopathy and managing their conditions. We understand the dangerous implications and time-sensitive manner in approaching this health condition. Your treatment will be based on what your expert ophthalmologist sees in your eyes. A few treatment options are:

  1. Laser surgery  which reduces the demand in the retina for new blood vessel growth.This can reduce bleeding and swelling of the retina. 

  2. Medications such as Avastin, Eylea, and Lucentis. These medications help stop new leaky blood vessel growth and ultimately  reduce swelling of the macula and slow the vision loss process.

Frequently Asked Questions About Diabetic Retinopathy

What Happens During a Diabetic Retinopathy Screening?

The best way to diagnose diabetic retinopathy is with a comprehensive dilated eye exam. Your eye doctor will put drops in your eyes to dilate your pupils. This allows them to have a better view inside your eyes. The drops can cause your close vision to blur and sensitivity to light for a few hours after.

How Often Should Diabetic People Get Their Eyes Checked?

Diabetics should have a complete eye exam at least once a year. Your primary care physician may recommend more regular screenings based on the extent of your retinal damage and any other complications/risk factors.

Male Dr. Schedule Eye Exam

Get Screened for Diabetic Retinopathy at Clarkson Eyecare

If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes please give us a call to schedule an appointment. We have locations in 11 states across the country. Book a diabetic retinopathy screening at your nearest Clarkson Eyecare today. Our expert eye doctors are ready to give retinal screenings and get you on your treatment plan to prevent vision loss.