How do diabetes mellitus patients prevent retinopathy?
(02.21.2008)

Generally, people’s fear of diabetes mellitus is not diabetes mellitus itself, but fear of the resulting complications. Diabetic retinopathy is the primary reason for blindness and vision disability in developed countries, and it is also one of the main causes in China. The retina in the eyes is one of the tissues most easily damaged by diabetes mellitus in the human body. Once the retina is damaged seriously, the eyesight greatly decreases and the patient may even become blind. Retinopathy is very closely associated with the control of diabetes mellitus. When the disease is badly controlled, the morbidity of retinopathy will grow higher and the pathological changes will grow greater. The older the age of onset, the greater the ratio of retinopathy.

This pathological change usually demonstrates microangioma in the retina, ecchymosis, exudation, maculopathy, newly born blood vessels, fibrous proliferation, and the most serious one is the detachment of retina. Generally, diabetes patients should accept one fundus examination every year; once retinopathy is found the interval time of examination should be shortened.

Though there is no specific treatment yet for the prevention and radical cure for diabetic retinopathy at present, some methods can prevent the development and deterioration of the disease effectively. One is the control of diabetes mellitus; this can promote the reversion of early-stage diabetic retinopathy, and the long-term control of blood glucose levels is of great significance for the prevention and delaying of the occurrence and development of diabetes mellitus. The other is laser therapy; this is the most favorable method for proliferative diabetic retinopathy at present. It is a palliative-type medical method to reduce the incidence of blindness, but its therapeutic effect is definite. When the proliferative diabetic retinopathy deteriorates, the patient should undergo a corpus vitreum retina operation. Although diabetic retinopathy itself does not cause death, the serious damage to eyesight must not be underestimated. If the patient receives active treatment in the early stages, the eyesight can be kept to some degree, otherwise the prognosis is very serious.