Diabetes is a serious, complex condition where the body can’t maintain healthy levels of glucose in the blood. Uncontrolled blood glucose levels affect the entire body by damaging the blood vessels—including the most delicate ones in our eyes. This is known as diabetic retinopathy.
Diabetic retinopathy causes damage to the network of blood vessels that nourish the retina (or the light-sensing part of our eye). These blood vessels may bleed or leak out fluid, causing distorted vision.
Certain risk factors that place you at greater risk of developing diabetic retinopathy include increasing age, elevated HbA1c levels, high blood pressure and/or high cholesterol levels, smoking, long-standing diabetes, and existing renal disease.