How often do you get a full retinal exam?


I have been type 1 for 52 years. I was diagnosed with AMD around 7 yrs ago but it is still the dry version.


I dread going to the eye doctor. I really freak out when they poke at my eyes. When I was diagnosed with diabetes, my endocrinologist asked when my last eye exam had occurred. It had been years due to my fear of eye docs. I went to see the eye doc recommended and it was awful. I went back 6 months later at the eye doc’s insistence and it was even a worse experience. After 3 strikes, I counted the eye doc OUT. I asked my PCP who HE went to for his own care.

I have been seeing THAT eye doc every 4 months for several years now. They do not check my vision as that is not covered under my Medicare insurance, but do everything else imaginable, including retinal exams. Everything (other than vision check for glasses or contacts) is covered because of being diabetic.

I still freak out, almost walked out on a few occasions, but I like the doc, trust him, but that doesn’t make me like the poking.

Most insurance will cover the cost of eye docs if you are diabetic, but have limitations on the vision test for corrective lenses, like glasses or contacts. I do not wear glasses or contacts and my doc said they wouldn’t help my vision anyway. I had my vision checked once and had to pay additional amount for that on top of my co-pay. Since then, no more vision checks and my visit is treated the same as any other specialized doc appt. I don’t have a special vision rider or insurance.

I do think anyone with diabetes should routinely have their eyes examined to avoid potential problems or watch problems that may have already developed. Just my opinion. If anyone is reluctant to see an eye doc it is me and I am going 3 x per year.