- Doctor Dr. Deepak Vaidya
- Surgery Diabetic Retinopathy
- Date April 27, 2018
What is Diabetic Retinopathy?
The retina is the layer at the back of the eye that is sensitive to light. Diabetes affects the small vessels of the retina. This leads to diabetic retinopathy. There are various stages of diabetic retinopathy. For Diabetes Retinopathy Treatment in Mumbai consult with Our Eye Specialist doctor in Mumbai.
What is Proliferative diabetic retinopathy?
Proliferative diabetic retinopathy is the most severe form of diabetic retinopathy and is characterized by the growth of abnormal blood vessels on the surface of the retina. This stage of the disease often causes no symptoms, but it puts the individual at a high risk for vision loss.
What are the stages of Diabetic retinopathy?
– The first recognizable stage is called mild nonproliferative retinopathy. During this stage, the blood vessels in the retina begin to develop small bulges called microaneurysms. These microaneurysms can lead to fluid leaking into the retina, but usually there are no noticeable symptoms at this stage, making it difficult for people with the condition to be aware and seek medical attention.
– In the next stage of diabetic retinopathy, called moderate nonproliferative retinopathy, the number of microaneurysms increases. When these microaneurysms start to leak fluid into the macula, the center of the retina responsible for focusing, it causes swelling, resulting in a condition called Diabetic Macula Edema (DME). People with DME may experience blurred or distorted vision. The National Eye Institute states that about half of all people with diabetic retinopathy will develop DME, and the likelihood of this condition increases as diabetic retinopathy becomes more severe.
– During severe nonproliferative retinopathy, the condition affects a greater portion of the retina and results in the closure of its blood vessels. The bleeding from the damaged blood vessels in the retina can lead to the appearance of floating spots or cobwebs in the field of vision.
– Proliferative retinopathy is the final stage of diabetic retinopathy and occurs when the damage to the normal blood vessels stimulates the growth of new, abnormal blood vessels. These blood vessels form as a response to the loss of oxygen and nutrients caused by the closure of normal capillaries. They grow on the surface of the retina and attach to the collagen fibers that make up the vitreous humor, which is the clear gel that fills the center of the eye. These new blood vessels are fragile and can leak blood easily, causing blurry vision. As they continue to grow, they form fibrous scar tissue which eventually contracts, pulling the retina away from its main blood supply, leading to a condition called traction retinal detachment. Immediate attention is necessary to minimize permanent vision loss in the case of traction retinal detachment.
How to manage Diabetic retinopathy?
Effective management of diabetic retinopathy starts with controlling and monitoring diabetes regularly. This involves getting hemoglobin A1c levels, blood pressure, and lipid levels under control. Research has shown that having these indicators close to normal reduces the risk of developing diabetic retinopathy and slows its progression if it does occur.
Diabetes management should include:
- Adhere to a balanced diet and engage in physical activity regularly.
- Take medications as directed.
- Monitor and control blood pressure.
- Reduce alcohol consumption and avoid smoking.
- Attend regular diabetes check-ups.
- Undergo comprehensive eye exams every 4-6 months.
To prevent vision loss from diabetic retinopathy, it is recommended that people with diabetes get a comprehensive dilated eye exam annually, or more often if the condition has already been diagnosed. Early detection of diabetic retinopathy can reduce the risk of blindness by 95%. Get Diabetes Retinopathy Treatment in Mumbai at Dr. Vaidya Eye Hospital.
Regular eye examinations are especially important for:
- People with a history of diabetes for 5 or more years
- Those who struggle to maintain stable blood sugar levels
- Pregnant women with diabetes.
Therefore, it is crucial for them to have frequent and thorough eye exams to detect any issues early on and prevent the risk of blindness.
What are the treatment options for Diabetes Retinopathy Treatment in Mumbai?
Your ophthalmologist has several therapy options depending on the stage of diabetic retinopathy:
Eye injections: Eye injections with anti-VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) drugs like Lucentis, Avastin, or Eylea can be used to block abnormal blood vessel growth and reduce swelling (in case of macula edema). These treatments are given by injecting the medicine directly into the eye and are performed in a doctor’s office. They are made painless for the patient through local anesthesia and the frequency of injections is determined by the physician based on the severity of the condition and the patient’s response to the medication.
Laser: Retinal laser photocoagulation is a form of laser surgery that is used to treat diabetic retinopathy. The laser is directed at damaged tissue in the retina and is used to seal leaking blood vessels, which can cause diabetic macular edema and proliferative retinopathy. This method of treatment is more efficient and less uncomfortable for patients compared to traditional laser treatment.
Vitrectomy: This is a surgical procedure where the surgeon removes the vitreous, which is the clear, gel-like substance filling the central chamber of the eye, using tiny instruments. This allows for the removal of blood that has leaked into the vitreous and is causing clouded vision, or the removal of scar tissue that is pulling on the retina and causing detachment. Laser treatment is frequently performed during the procedure, and the vitreous is replaced with clear saline fluid. As the eye heals, it produces its own fluid to replace the removed vitreous. Vitrectomies performed by eye specialists are minimally invasive and small gauge, which reduces complications and speeds up recovery.
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