Diabetic Meridian Retinopathy

What Is Diabetic Meridian Retinopathy

Diabetic meridian retinopathy is a common cause of blindness among diabetic patients.   Retinopathy is the complication of diabetes affecting the eyes, or to be more precise the blood vessels in the retina, however, the good news is that blindness can be prevented when symptoms are addressed or treated promptly.  Diabetic meridian retinopathy occurs because diabetes weakens the small blood vessels due to the high concentration of glucose in the blood, and the longer the patient has diabetes the greater the damage is to the eye.

This is why many diabetic patients go on to suffer from complications that affect other parts of the body whose supply of blood depends on small blood vessels. Retinopathy may start without any noticeable changes in the person’s vision and some patients are not aware of their symptoms and therefore will not consult their doctor unless something is causing them an uncomfortable feeling or when the eyes is already hurting which by the time they get to their doctor their symptoms have already advanced.

Diabetic Eye Examinations

Eye care for diabetic sufferers must be a priority and a once a year consultation to an eye doctor may help save them from going blind and other undesirable effects of retinopathy.  An ophthalmologist or eye doctor can see the condition of your eyes with a simple eye examination and will give proper instructions on how to care and prevent retinopathy from developing, or when it’s already present – how to manage the symptoms to avoid total vision loss.  Retinopathy happens when the blood vessels in the eyes get weak and cause the blood and some liquid to leak into the retina from the blood vessels, then if not treated promptly and blood sugar levels remains high, new blood vessels will grow on the retina.

The new blood vessels are often weak and they can break and open very easily even while the patient is just sleeping.  When blood vessels open or break, blood can then leak into the middle eye in front of the retina and change the patient’s vision.  Then what happens next is that bleeding will cause scar tissue to form, pulling on the retina and cause it to be moved away from the wall of the patient’s eye.  Macular edema is another common condition caused by retinopathy.  Macula is found in the middle of the retina that helps people see details, however in patients with macular edema this is swollen and therefore affects the vision and when not treated promptly may again lead to blindness.

This is why it is important for diabetes patients to control and strictly monitor their blood sugar levels to help avoid the weakening of small blood vessels that may affect the eyes, heart and other organs or the body.  People with diabetes can still live a normal and healthy life as long as they follow their doctor’s advice and make some changes in their lifestyle and diet.  The combination of healthy living and valuable information in the prevention of most common complications of diabetes will help patients prevent it from developing and that includes diabetic meridian retinopathy.