I talked with my family nurse today,and they have found something - bacround retinopathy. Some small “spots”. I am starting with a pump next month. Gives me a little bit comfort. But the question is - is there a little chance that it reverses? Dissappears? :confused: cried a lot before i came to work… 21 years without no complications… And this happens.

At 115 tears, I needed lasers. My doc said" what did you expect?" I got pump soon thereafter, and have had no lasers needed in 20 years. Its always a shock even though we know it could happen. Suggest you get it done and move forward.

Good luck.

the above should say 15 years...

Hi Maarja, background retinopathy is more likely the longer you’ve had D, it’s not easy to escape, but is NOT sight-threatening like Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy. And the one does not necessarily lead to the other, especially if you keep as good control as poss. And usually it is completely symptomless, i.e. won’t affect your vision, which is why the first you hear of it is when the medics pick it up in screening progs.

I totally understand your fear, been there myself, had over 10 years of background retinopathy along with baaaad control of BGs & so went on to get PDR & laser treatment. You going on the pump at this early stage is the best thing you can do.

I found a lot online about a herb called Pycnogenol which is licenced & prescribed for retinopathy in Germany, France, Japan, NZ…but virtually unheard of in USA & UK! I’ve been taking this since my PDR diagnosis & first laser treatments 7 years’ ago. Also, this website ( was invaluable to me for basic, clear info, tho’ I think the best thing to do if poss is to go back and talk to your nurse or eye specialist.

Nothing gets you easily over that initial shock but it is very early stages and non sight-threatening, and with good control very unlikely to progress to PDR. I’ve been pumping 2 years and it’s been a miracle how much my control has improved…it really should help prevent/delay any complications.


Hi Lisa, don’t think there is any treatment for background retinopathy…usually just wait n see n monitor in case it develops further. Laser is for Proliferative Retinopathy. So hopefully Maarja won’t need to have any laser at this stage, nor ever.

Just don’t want to scare M unnecessarily!

Glad to hear you haven’t needed any for 20 years :slight_smile:

Ingrid, thanks for clarity. I was certainly jumping the gun. Hope and prayers the pump stabilizes the BDR for M!

Do you have a CGM?

(see comment above, got posted in wrong place oops)

:slight_smile: :slight_smile: wish I had CGM, not rich enough & rare to get funding here (UK) unless you’re pregnant or still suffering major blackout/fit-inducing hypos despite pump therapy on its own. I’ll keep dreaming… Still, altho the pump is hard work initially, it so so improves control & is a big step in the right direction for eliminating all those previous massive BG swings. Do you have CGM Lisa? You been pumping about 20 years? Wow that’s a long time!

I live om Norway, thankfully money or insurance is not an issue here. Sitting now behind the doc’s door and waiting my name to be called. I have prepared myself with all the papers and bloodsugars over the past. 3 months. Fingers crossed! :slight_smile:

Ingrid, I had a dexcom CGm and loved it. I switched to MM 530 G pump and it has sensor included. Since having this, I have had nothing but frustration with the senor. Unreliable readings can drive you crazy. Found I needed to test twice as much so I am back to no sensor. When my insurance starts again in july, I will get a dexcom again. I have pumped since the time of big pumps. T1 46 years. Doing well. love Tu diabetes to share knowledge. Thanks for yours.

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I am geting a pump with a montitor. :) Next friday :)
I am so thrilled and i don't know what to expect.. always been an oldscool and casual girl with diabetes. So this is totally new and... awesome. :)
Talked about my eyes and where i stand now... and she said I should be calm and proud of myself. Looks like that my eyeproblem is "ordinary..". If i can say that.
We'll se if pump makes magic and holds my bloodsuger more under control. :)

YAY!!!!! Should really help your control and help prevent/delay any future complications, especially with the cgms too. Background retinopathy can be looked at as just the expected changes in the eye after X years of diabetes, and nothing to worry about. Glad you have reassuring news about your eyes and good news about the pump/cgms :)

Hi Lisa, I've read nothing but frustrations with huge inaccuracy of Enlites and nothing but praise for accuracy of Dexcom over last 2 years! The trends they show are still useful, and also the hypo cut-off feature on pump and ability to recharge the sensors, but still, Dexcom wins hands down. But but just the last few weeks some people have been trying the new Enlite 2 in UK and saying they're much more accurate, akin to Dexcom. Seems the tide is turning for Medtronic cgms at last! I know I'd still choose Dexcom if I had the opportunity for cgms though. Yeah agree TuDiabetes is really great for info sharing, support & knowledge..I particularly like all the subgroups here so you can link in to your particular concerns/issues with the big D.

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thanks Ingrid,
this is good news. I cannot afford to get a new dex so will wait for the upgrade MM. When is it supposed to hit the states? I will call MM and ask them too.

dunno I’m afraid, hope not too long (isn’t it annoying reading about something only to discover it’s not available in your own country!! I’m currently trying to get hold of Orbit Micros but getting nowhere…haven’t given up yet tho & just emailed my DSN). Love your cat pic btw! x

Hi, Maarja. I´ve got backround retinopathy for more than 15 years and has not needed laser treatment yet. Sometimes the ophthalmologist tells me it has gotten better and sometimes it has gotten a bit worse. So, yes, you can stabilize it and it van even reverse. Nothing to worry about, just go see an ophthalmologist regularly and you´ll most likely be fine.