As a macular specialist, our eye surgeon in Alexandria is whom you want to consult with when it comes to the disease known as diabetic retinopathy. Caused as a complication of having either type one or type two diabetes, it is exactly this type of eye-health concern that we are well known for addressing here at The Retina Group of Washington. We will diagnose you, evaluate the seriousness of your individual situation, and then recommend the appropriate treatment option or options. The good news is that by acting promptly, we can help you to avoid the most severe consequences of diabetic retinopathy, including loss of vision.
Anyone with diabetes is prone to this eye disease, in which high blood sugar leads to damage occurring to your retinal blood vessels. Risk factors that increase the chances of diabetic retinopathy are smoking, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. Women who are pregnant are also more susceptible. Unfortunately, there are no symptoms to alert you to its presence in the early stages of diabetic retinopathy. A yearly eye exam is highly recommended for anyone who has been diagnosed with diabetes. If you do experience signs that can include blurred vision, problems in color perception, spots that appear in your field of vision (also called floaters), or any degree of vision loss, this is typically an indication that diabetic retinopathy may have progressed to a more advanced stage. Under those circumstances, you should schedule an appointment with our eye surgeon in Alexandria.
If you are found to have diabetic retinopathy, the form of treatment will depend on the severity of your symptoms and how much, if any, damage to the blood vessels in your retinas has occurred. Mild cases may require no treatment, other than a modulation of your blood sugar. In other cases, laser surgery, specifically focal photocoagulation, can allow our eye surgeon in Alexandria to seal blood vessels if they have leaked due to the effects of diabetic retinopathy. This will slow vision loss by approximately half and improve your ability to see. More than one surgery might be needed in order to achieve maximum effectiveness.