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Diabetes can lead to a condition called Diabetic Retinopathy as well as other eye problems. Diabetic retinopathy (damage to the retina) is caused by complications of diabetes mellitus, which can eventually lead to blindness.
It is an ocular manifestation of systemic disease, which affects up to 80% of all patients who have had diabetes for 10 years or more. Research indicates that at least 90% of new cases could be prevented if proper treatment and monitoring of the eyes is carried out on a regular basis.
Regular eye tests can help to spot the early signs of this condition and enable you to take action to control diabetes before it damages your body and your eyes.
It is important to maintain regular health checks as there are often no early warning signs for diabetic conditions as in the case with Diabetic Retinopathy. Even macular edema, which may cause vision loss more rapidly, may not have any warning signs for some time. A person with macular edema is likely to have blurred vision, making it hard to do things like read or drive. In some cases, the vision will get better or worse during the day. Diabetics are entitled to free annual eye tests from the NHS.