Our doctors here at Southwest Eye Institute in El Paso, TX strive to ensure patient education and comfort comes first. Bringing awareness to certain eye diseases is important and this month mars diabetic eye awareness. The most common disease assocaited with this is diabetic retniopathy, which is caused by diabetes. Unfortuantely, there are not many symptoms that come along with this disease but our staff can make our patients aware of the different stages of the disease.
- Mild non-proliferative retinopathy: Small areas of swelling occur in the retina’s blood vessels.
- Moderate non-proliferative retinopathy: Blood vessels that nourish the retina become blocked or congested
- Severe non-proliferative retinopathy: More blood vessels become blocked, which ultimately disrupts the blood supply that nourishes the retina. The damaged retina then signals the body to produce new blood vessels.
- Proliferative retinopathy: At this advanced stage, signals sent by the retina trigger the development of new blood vessels that grow (or proliferate) in the retina and the vitreous, which is a transparent gel that fills the interior of the eye. Because these new blood vessels are abnormal, they can rupture and bleed, causing hemorrhages in the retina or vitreous. Scar tissue can develop and can tug at the retina, causing further damage or even retinal detachment.
The good news is this disease can be detected with a comprehensive eye exam given by our doctors here at Southwest Eye Institute. Call either of our office locations in the east or west to get an appointment set up today.