Diabetes and Eye Problems (cont.)

Preventing Eye Problems With Diabetes

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The American Diabetes Association offers these eye care guidelines for people with diabetes to help prevent eye problems:

  • People with type 1 diabetes should have a dilated eye exam by an ophthalmologist or optometrist within three to five years after diagnosis.
  • People with type 2 diabetes should have a dilated eye exam by an ophthalmologist or optometrist shortly after diagnosis.
  • Annual eye exams should be done with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes by an ophthalmologist or optometrist; more frequently if necessary.
  • When considering pregnancy, women with a history of diabetes should have an eye exam prior and during pregnancy. This does not pertain to women with gestational diabetes.

To prevent eye problems in diabetes, you should:

When to Contact Your Doctor About Eye Problems in Diabetes

If you have diabetes, contact your doctor about any eye problems in if any of the following occur:

  • Black spots in your vision.
  • Flashes of light.
  • "Holes" in your vision.
  • Blurred vision.

WebMD Medical Reference

American Diabetes Association: "Eye Disease."
American Diabetes Association: "Mental Heatlh Problem Linked to Diabetes."
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: "Take Charge of Your Diabetes."
Colucciello, M. Arch Ophthalmol 2005; 123:1273. Hernandez, C. Diabetes Care, 2006; 29:2028.
Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario, MD on May 18, 2012
© 2012 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

Last Editorial Review: 5/12/2012

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Diabetes and Eye Problems - Cataracts Question: Are you a diabetic who developed cataracts? Please share your experience?
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Diabetes and Eye Problems - Prevention Question: If you are diabetic, what changes have you made to prevent eye problems? How often do you see an eye specialist?