Diabetes can affect the retina (the light-detecting layer which lines the back of the eye). Diabetes can cause changes in the tiny retinal blood vessels at the back of the eye. This is called diabetic retinopathy. Severe forms of diabetic retinopathy can be dangerous as the condition can be asymptomatic before leading to vision loss or blindness. Early detection of diabetic retinopathy can help prevent vision loss.
You are at higher risk of diabetic retinopathy if you have
- had diabetes for a long-period of time
- poor blood glucose control
- diabetic kidney damage (nephropathy)
- high blood pressure
- raised cholesterol levels in the blood