Diabetic Eye Diseases and its Treatment

1. How diabetes occurs?
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Suger level in blood
Diabetes mellitus is the result of the body's inability to handle glucose, mainly due to the combination of insulin deficiency (both relative or absolute). In normal persons, insulin takes glucose from the blood and delivers it to wherever it is required.When this does not happen, blood sugar levels rise and diabetes occurs. High sugar levels per se do not cause symptoms. So why are we so obsessed about tight sugar control? The reason is that high sugar levels cause certain changes inside blood vessels, which in turn result in damages to various organs of the body. Studies have shown that tight control over blood sugar (and blood pressure, if high) can prevent, and in some cases reverse, these organ damage.


2. What are the types of eye diseases due to diabetes.
An organ is affected very seriously. The three eye diseases that might occur in diabetics are diabetic retinopathy, cataract and glaucoma. Although cataract and glaucoma are not limited to diabetics, they occur more commonly in this disease.
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Suger level in blood

 The common presentations in both these disorders are headache and blurring of vision. Diagnosis is fairly simple, and surgical treatment is the same as in non diabetic individuals. However, careful blood-glucose control is absolutely man- datory during and after surger. 

3. How occurs diseases in the eyes  due to diabetes and what is the effect of diabetic eye diseases in human organs?
Diabetic retinopathy, as the name implies, is an eye disease that is specific to diabetes. Retina is the part at the back of the eye where light falls after entering the eye and passing through the lens, somewhat similar to a movie projector and the screen; the screen being the retina. So why are we so obsessed about tight sugar control? The reason is that high sugar levels cause certain changes inside blood vessels, which in turn result in damages to various organs of the body. The thin blood vessels supplying the retina get affected by the high sugars of diabetics, causing tiny hemorrhages and leaks. These vessels are weak, and may subsequently break down to bleed inside the eye. Since a blood clot is opaque this causes sudden loss of vision in that eye in part or whole, depending on the size of the clot.


4. Treatment :
The thin blood vessels supplying the retina get affected by the high sugars of diabetics, causing tiny hemorrhages and leaks. At this stage, there are no vision-related problems so unless routinely checked for, this early retinopathy is likely to be missed. In some cases, the retina undergoes swelling (termed macular edema), which causes blurred vision. Routine eye examination is recommended in all diabetics, as early retinopathy and macular edema needs to be treated with laser therapy, a relatively inexpensive and painless procedure. If missed, later stages of retinopathy are not so easily treatable. If retinopathy is allowed to proceed, new blood-vessels start developing over the retina (termed proliferative retinopathy). 

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blood pressure measurement machine
Prior to an actual bleed, proliferative retinopathy can also be managed with laser but once occurs, the only discourse is surgery, which is performed only at specialized centres. Small bleeds may rarely disappear spontaneously, but may leave behind bands of scar-tissue that might pull at the retina and cause it to detach from the underlying tissue, which might also need surgical repair.

To sum up, diabetic eye diseases are an important group of diabetic complications. Regular eye check-up can identify early stages of retinopathy, and treatment at these early stages is relatively simple, with laser therapy. Later stages of the disease may require more specialized surgical care. But as the old adage goes, "prevention is (always) better than cure"!