I am broke. Diabetes is gonna have to wait for a while. Not only that… the stupid Dr that did
my last eye appt told me that I had “Freckles in my eyes.” "It’s nothing to worry about."
Now, I know that it is something to think on and try to find a way to deal with.
ok. Mumbling done. I’m done testing til I can find a way to get teststrips.
LOL! maybe that would explain why this is the worst pair of glassed I’ve ever had!
Well, an email from American Diabetes Supplies.com has told me different in their newsletter.
Diabetic retinopathy is when diabetes affects the retina, the inner light-sensitive tissue lining the back of the eye. This is called diabetic retinopathy. We like to think of the retina as the film in a camera. If it is damaged then the picture is never developed or seen - that is why retinopathy is the main threat to vision.
There are four stages of diabetic retinopathy:
- Mild nonproliferative retinopathy: This is the earliest phase which can begin after diabetes has affected the circulatory system of the retina. The walls of the retinal capillaries become weakened and microaneurysms form, which are small balloon-like outpouches of the petite blood vessels. Microaneurysms can leak blood, forming small dot-like hemorrhages, as well as fluid leading to swelling or edema in the retina.
- Moderate nonproliferative retinopathy: In this stage, the disease progresses or worsens, and there is blockage of the nourishing blood vessels of the retina.
- Severe nonproliferative retinopathy: As more blood vessels are blocked, the retina becomes deprived of oxygen or what we call “ischemic.” In order to uphold adequate oxygen supply, the retina sends a signal to the body to grow new fragile blood vessels in an attempt to bring in nourishment.
- Proliferative retinopathy: Once these new blood vessels are formed, this is known as neovascularization and the condition has converted to proliferative retinopathy. Proliferate indicates growth or flourishing of the new blood vessels not only along the retinal surface, but also growth into the vitreous gel which fills the inside of the eye. Since these vessels are fragile and delicate they leak and bleed (hemorrhage) causing obscured vision, blind spots, and if left untreated, blindness from retinal detachment.
"These stages are important to understand. However, it is just as or even more important to understand there is the possibility of macular edema, which is usually the primary cause of vision loss in diabetics. The macula is a very important part of our visual system and is where straight-ahead, detailed vision occurs. When fluid leaks into the center of the macula from damaged blood vessels, as described above, the macula swells and is what we term macular edema. Macular edema can happen at any stage of diabetic retinopathy, but it can more likely occur as the disease advances, so much so that roughly half of diabetics with proliferative retinopathy (Stage 4) also have macular edema.
Symptoms of retinopathy vary, but what is most concerning is that often there are no symptoms, especially in the early stages. You can develop both macular edema and proliferative retinopathy and still see fine. The best way to prevent vision loss is early detection and timely treatment. Everyone with diabetes, type 1 or 2, is at risk and should have a comprehensive dilated eye exam at least once a year. If retinopathy is present, an eye exam may be needed more often and treatment may be recommended to prevent progression. Also, women with diabetes who become pregnant should have an eye exam within the first trimester, and should be watched closely thereafter, even into the first year postpartum. This does not apply to women who develop gestational diabetes as they have no increased risk for developing retinopathy."