What is Diabetic Retinopathy?
Diabetic Retinopathy refers to a condition in which the retina is affected by diabetes that leads to destabilized blood vessels. A major health problem in India is an increasing incidence of diabetes mellitus. Diabetes can affect both young as well as old. Many diabetic patients suffer from this disease in which a change in retinal blood vessels leads to loss of vision. The common factors that lead to diabetic retinopathy are:
•an improper diet which is high in fat and carbohydrates
•inactive way of lifestyle
Diabetic Retinopathy is of two types:
Background Retinopathy: Background Retinopathy refers to a condition in which, blood vessels inside the retina become peculiarly leaky that permit substance like lipid to leak out. If this leaking lipid or fluid starts getting collected in Macula then it can even affect the vision to a marked degree.
Proliferative Retinopathy: Proliferative Retinopathy refers to a condition in which ‘new’ blood vessels tend to grow on surface of optic nerve or retina that may lead fragile vessels to bleed within vitreous gel. This results in blocking of light that is unable to reach the retina. The severe symptoms of Proliferative Retinopathy are as follows blindness, painful glaucoma and even sometimes lead to severe loss of sight.
What are the symptoms of Diabetic Retinopathy?
Diabetes results in weakening of blood vessels in body that deteriorates retinal blood vessels. Symptoms like high blood pressure; high blood glucose levels, reduced central vision; genetic influence and may even sometimes result in abrupt loss of vision due to large bled in vitreous. All such symptoms propounds in progression and development of diabetic retinopathy.
Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy:
There are various ways by which diabetic retinopathy can be treated that includes both surgical operations and laser treatments. The most preferred laser treatment is photocoagulation.
Photocoagulation is one of the most used therapies that help in preventing growth of anomalous blood vessels. Lasers are most commonly used for treating diabetic retinopathy. Lasers are created by a highly energetic and intense beam of light that helps in slowing down or even stopping progression of diabetic retinopathy in order to stabilize vision.
Background retinopathy is mostly treated by using Laser therapy. This therapy stops the leakage of fluid into macula which results in stabilized vision. While in Proliferative Retinopathy two to three sessions of Laser therapy is required. In this therapy atypical blood vessels are destroyed in order to minimize chances of severe vision loss. But one should notice that laser treatment is not a one- time procedure. Regular checkups and precautions are needed to be taken in order to prevent this disease.
Furthermore if your disease is severe which cannot be cured with laser therapy, then you’ll need to go for a surgical operation named VITRECTOMY. In this surgical operation dense vitreous gel is detached from inside the eye with some special surgerical instruments.
How to diagnose Diabetic Retinopathy?
Tools like ultrasound, slit lamp, etc are used to access whether a person is suffering from this disease or with any other eye problem.