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Diabetic Eye Disease: Know the Symptoms

Are you aware that being a diabetes sufferer increases the risk of developing a number of eye-related conditions? These conditions include glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and cataracts, plus several other conditions that can still effect the health of the eye, and your vision.

Diabetic retinopathy, which occurs due to high blood glucose levels causing damage to the blood vessels in the retina. It's also an extremely common cause of blindness in adults.

A very familiar result of old age, cataracts, which cause vision impairment due to the clouding of the eyeí´s lens, usually develop sooner in diabetes sufferers.

Diabetes sufferers have double the odds of developing glaucoma, which is can result in blindness. This condition results from escalating pressure in the eye, resulting in damage of nerves in the eye and loss of vision.

All diabetes sufferers, regardless of if it is type 1 or type 2 - are at a heightened chance of developing diabetic eye disease. The risk is even higher if the diabetes is uncontrolled. Additional risk factors include:

  • Obesity
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Poor diet
  • Lack of exercise
  • Smoking
  • Race (Hispanics and African Americans may be more vulnerable to vision loss and diabetic retinopathy).


Symptoms of diabetic eye diseases often fluctuate when blood sugar levels do, and may include:

  • Double vision
  • Eye pain
  • Blind spots or blurry vision
  • Seeing floaters, or shadow in the field of view
  • Trouble with near vision
  • Corneal abrasions

Unfortunately, these symptoms are more than warning signs. The onset of diabetic eye disease can actually occur before its symptoms do.


Detecting the disease before these symptoms surface can make a huge difference when it comes to avoiding serious vision loss. For this reason, it is strongly advised that diabetes sufferers have a yearly eye exam to keep tabs on the health of their eyes. If you suffer from diabetes, make sure you know about how to avoid diabetic eye disease. Annual eye exams, coupled with proper preventative measures, can save your vision.