Eye Care Tailored to Patients with Diabetes
Diabetes is a chronic condition that interferes with the body’s ability to manage blood sugar. It can affect many parts of the body and has a direct relationship with eye health.
Though people with diabetes are at an increased risk for certain eye problems, making your optometrist part of your diabetes management team can help mitigate that risk. Early intervention can help with most eye diseases, and regular eye exams provide the insight needed for appropriate treatment.
Visit OPT Optometric for eye care designed with diabetes in mind.
Eye Conditions Connected to Diabetes
Diabetic retinopathy is one of the most serious ocular complications of diabetes. The retina at the back of the eye is full of blood vessels, and high blood sugar levels can cause those blood vessels to weaken, swell, and leak.
Diabetic retinopathy usually doesn’t show symptoms until the condition has progressed. Symptoms you may experience in the later stages include:
- floaters or dark spots in your vision
- struggling with nighttime vision
- blurred vision
- difficulty distinguishing colors
- vision loss
The best way to manage diabetic retinopathy is through prevention and regular eye exams. There are also treatments available, including injections, laser therapy, and surgery.
Diabetic Macular Edema
Diabetic macular edema is caused when fluid buildup damages the macula, the small spot on the retina responsible for detailed vision.
Diabetic macular edema can often occur alongside diabetic retinopathy. Its symptoms include:
- Blurred central vision
- Wavy central vision
- Washed out or faded color vision
Treatments for diabetic macular edema include injections, laser therapy, and steroids.
Glaucoma refers to a group of eye conditions that cause damage to the optic nerve. Glaucoma risk is also increased with diabetes, especially after diabetic retinopathy has developed. People with diabetes have almost twice the risk of developing open-angle glaucoma than the rest of the population.
Glaucoma is often associated with increased pressure of the fluid within the eye and typically doesn’t have any early-stage symptoms. Treatments include medicated eye drops to relieve pressure or surgery.
Diabetes is also connected to cataracts. Heightened levels of blood sugars in the aqueous humor in the eye can cause cataracts—clouding in the eye’s lens.
Symptoms of cataracts include:
- Clouded vision
- Blurred or dim vision
- Sensitivity to light and glare
- Problems with night vision
- Fading or yellowing color vision
Cataracts are treated by either adjusting your prescription or undergoing surgery to replace the lens.
How We Keep Watch on Your Eyes
We use a technology called optical coherence tomography (OCT) to get a clear picture of the inner eye. This is a noninvasive way to get images of the inner eye, allowing us to see the layers of the retina. This allows us to keep a close watch on any changes or damage in the retina.
Managing Your Eye Health with Diabetes
Benjamin Franklin famously said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” and that’s something we can get behind. When it comes to diabetic eye disease, the best way to stay on top of potential damage is by coming in for regular eye exams and following your diabetes management plan.
Be sure to follow your health care team’s instructions regarding your diabetes. The ABCs of diabetes care can help keep your diabetes controlled and lower the risk of health complications, including those that threaten your vision.
Don’t wait until you notice symptoms. Make our optometrists a part of your diabetes care team. Book an appointment to safeguard your eye health.
We are proudly located in the Mission district.
A bike lock station is located in front of our office. We are a short walk from the 24th Street/Mission BART Station, or metered street parking is available.
To ensure the best one on one experience we are currently scheduling appointments for all in office visits.
- 1415 Valencia St.
- San Francisco, CA 94110
- Phone: (415) 814-2564
- Fax: (415) 796-2605
- Email: [email protected]
Hours Of Operation
- Monday: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
- Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
- Wednesday: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
- Thursday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Friday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Saturday: Styling appointments available
- Sunday: Closed
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