Diabetic Eye Disease
It is impossible to overstate the importance of routine eye exams for those suffering from diabetes.
Routine eye exam with dilation is really the only method of detecting diabetic eye disease. When caught early, retinopathy can be treated to prevent further permanent damage. Treatments range from improved blood sugar control, to laser treatments and sometimes surgery.
Diabetic retinopathy is often treated with a laser treatment called scatter laser treatment. This treatment, which is done in the office, helps shrink abnormal diabetic blood vessels by placing 1,000 to 2,000 laser burns in the periphery of the retina. Two or more sessions usually are required to complete treatment.
This laser treatment is more effective before the fragile, new diabetic blood vessels have started to bleed. Even if bleeding has commenced, however, scatter laser treatment may still be possible, depending on the amount of bleeding. If the bleeding is severe, you may need a surgical procedure called a vitrectomy. During a vitrectomy, blood is removed from the center of the eye.