It is important to follow up on your diagnosis with a treatment as soon as possible,6,7 as the speed at which these eye diseases progress is dependent on a variety of factors that can be hard to control.
If one of your eyes is affected, the risk of developing it in your other eye goes up significantly.4,7,12 It is important to check your sight in both eyes regularly with tests like the Amsler grid.5,7,9,12
Although these are chronic diseases, current treatment options, such as anti-VEGF therapy, make it possible to delay, stop or reverse your vision loss and preserve your sight for longer, helping you to continue the activities you enjoy.7
Today, there are several treatment options open to patients with these eye diseases.3,6,7,9,10,12,20 You and your doctor will together determine which treatment is best for you.9
The following lifestyle changes can help:
Strict control of diabetes, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia
Involves aiming an intense “hot” laser at the abnormal blood vessels in the eyes to destroy them
1. Ciulla TA, et al. Diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema: pathophysiology, screening, and novel therapies. Diabetes Care. 2003;26:2653-2664.
2. National Eye Institute. Facts About Diabetic Eye Diseases. Available at: http://www.nei.nih-gov/health/diabetic/retinopathy.asp; Accessed on Mar 30, 2016.
3. Fareed A. A review of diabetic macular edema. Digital Journal of Ophthalmology. 1997;3.
4. Watkins PJ. Retinopathy. BMJ. 2003;326:924-926.
5. American Diabetes Association. Living with diabetes. 2011. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/cornplications/eye-complications/; Accessed on Mar 30, 2016.
6. Canadian Diabetes Association. Diabetes and you: vision health. 2011. Available at: http://www.diabetes.ca/diabetesandyou/living/complications/vision-health/; Accessed on Mar 30, 2016.
7. Royal College of Ophthalmology. Diabetic Retinopathy Guidelines. 2012. Available at: http://www.rcophth.ac.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/2013-SCI-301-FINAL-DR-GUIDELINES-DEC-2012-updated-July-2013.pdf; Accessed on Mar 30, 2016.
8. Varma R, et al. Visual Impairment and Blindness Avoided with Ranibizumab in Hispanic and Non-Hispanic Whites with Diabetic Macular Edema in the United States. Ophthalmology. 2015;122(5):982-989.
9. Revisiting DME. Available at http://www.retinalphysician.com/printarticle.aspx?articlelD=106441; Accessed on Mar 30, 2016.
10. Eyre H and Kahn R. Preventing cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. Diabetes Care. 2004;27:1812-1824.
11. National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse. Prevent diabetes problems: Keep your diabetes under control. 2008; NIH Publication No. 08-4349.
12. Mayo Clinic Staff. Lifestyle and home remedies. Available at: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/wetmacular-degeneration/basics/lifestyle-home-remedies/con-20043518; Accessed on Mar 30. 2016.
13. WHO. Fact sheet 312: Diabetes. 2011. Available at: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs312/en; Accessed on Mar 30, 2016.
14. The Amsler Grid. Available at http/www.amd.org/the-amsler-grid/; Accessed on Oct 05, 2017.
15. Crossland M, Rubin G; The Amsler chart: absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Br J Ophthalmol.2007;91:391-393.
16. LUCENTIS® Summary of Product Characteristics. Novartis AG; Sept. 2015.
17. Hariprasad SM, et al. Vision-related quality of life in patients with diabetic macular edema. Br J Ophthalmol. 2008;92:89-92.
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27. DME. Available[online] at URL: https://www.preventblindness.org/diabetic-macular-edema-dme. As accessed on June 22, 2018.