Diabetic retinopathy is damage to the retina, the light sensitive tissue at the back of the eye, caused by the complications of diabetes. This damage occurs when the effects of diabetes on blood glucose levels cause the retinal blood vessels to weaken and haemorrhage.
It is estimated that close to one million people in Australia now have diabetes, and all of these people are at risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. This risk increases the longer a person has diabetes, with further risk factors including high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking.
It is important for people with diabetes to have their eyes examined regularly, as early treatment of abnormal blood vessels can prevent loss of vision.
Coastal Eye Centre offers the highest standard of expertise in the treatment of diabetic retinopathy.