Diabetic Eyecare: What Are the Two Types of Diabetic Retinopathy?

Did you know that diabetes is a leading cause of vision loss? In fact, three-quarters of people who live with diabetes for more than 15 years will eventually suffer from eye health issues, while a tenth of them will experience significant vision loss.

While glaucoma, cataracts, and other conditions can all impact diabetic eye health, diabetic retinopathy—which occurs when the blood vessels in the retina become damaged—is the biggest potential complication.

Here, we’ll take a closer look at the two types of diabetic retinopathy. We’ll also highlight the critical role of diabetic eyecare in diagnosing and treating diabetic retinopathy before it progresses to blindness.

Nonproliferative Diabetic Retinopathy (NPDR)

The early and more common stage of diabetic retinopathy, NPDR, occurs when blood vessels in the retina weaken and stop growing. As more blood vessels become impacted, the condition progresses from mild to severe. While mild NPDR may have few or no symptoms, severe NPDR can cause significant vision problems.

NPDR can also involve a buildup of fluid known as macular edema, resulting in permanent vision loss.

Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy (PDR)

The advanced stage of diabetic retinopathy, PDR, occurs when retinal blood cells become severely damaged. This may lead to neovascularization, a condition in which abnormal new blood vessels are produced. If these fragile new cells leak into the vitreous, they can interfere with normal fluid flow, create pressure within the eyeball, and eventually result in the development of glaucoma.

PDR can also cause retinal detachment due to the formation of scar tissue. If left untreated, PDR can lead to severe vision impairment and even blindness.

Schedule Your Diabetic Eye Exam Today

Early detection and management are crucial in preventing vision loss caused by diabetic retinopathy. Along with blood sugar control and proper management of other diabetes-related health conditions, routine eye exams can significantly reduce the risk of progression. If diagnosed, there are effective treatment options available, such as laser therapy, medication injections, and surgery. Seeing a highly trained and experienced ophthalmologist like Dr. Thomas Croley is essential for proper care and guidance when managing this condition.

From his extensive education and training to his involvement in groundbreaking research, it is clear that Dr. Thomas Croley is a highly skilled and knowledgeable ophthalmologist in Ocala, Florida. His expertise in cataract surgery and various eye procedures has been recognized nationally and internationally, making him one of the industry’s leading eye doctors.

To schedule an eye exam or to learn more about diabetic eye treatment with Dr. Croley at the Central Florida Eye Institute, call our Ocala, FL, office at (352) 237-8400.

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