Can diabetes cause vision problems

Can diabetes cause vision problems

A review article by

Dr. Somedatta Ghosh (Pal)

Diabetes & Vision Loss

Are you also one of those who uses power glasses and gradually your power is increasing? Have you ever thought of the probable reason for it? If you are diabetic and don’t give enough importance to strictly maintaining your sugar level, it may be the cause of your vision loss.

Why People Need to be Concerned about Diabetes?

Eye problem developed due to diabetes is called diabetic retinopathy (DR). It is a very common cause of blindness among young diabetic adults. More than 100 million Indians are diabetic and India is named as “World’s diabetic capital”. Almost 12.5% of Indian diabetics have DR. So social awareness of DR is very important in India.

How Diabetes Causes Vision Loss

The most dangerous outcome of chronic diabetes is vascular problems. Excess blood sugar levels help to deposit sugar and triglyceride plaques inside the blood vessels throughout the body and thus blood flow is hampered.

In the case of thin blood vessels of the eye, their structure gets hampered easily. They show outpouching and small swelling and soon start to leak blood inside the eye. The neurons inside the eye start to die due to less supply of oxygen and nutrients through blood flow. The human body tries to repair the blood flow and as a result, a large number of tiny blood vessels are formed at the backside of the eye (Angiogenesis).

The leaked blood and heap of gel-like blood vessels deposited inside the eye block the vision.

Credit Source : fightingblindness


Sometimes the open path through which human eyes drain out tears also gets blocked. It increases the fluid pressure inside the eye dangerously. It damages optic nerves and causes blindness. This problem is called Glaucoma.


Sometimes an infusion of fluid happens inside the lens due to the deposition of sugar. Lens cells also start to die. It ultimately results in swelling of the lens and cataract formation.

The vision becomes cloudy and people face problems reading, writing, driving in night etc.

Symptoms of DR

It includes:

  • Blurred vision
  • To see the colours faded
  • Poor night vision
  • Small dark spots in your vision
  • Trouble to see the finer details, like small letters, faraway objects, etc.

A diabetic patient must visit an eye specialist if he/she develops any one of the above symptoms.

Diagnosis of DR

An ophthalmologist can detect DR using any of the following simple tests:

  • Visual acuity test: It measures how clearly a patient can see.
  • Eye pressure test: Pressure inside the eye is measured.
  • Dilated eye examination: Pupils are dilated using eye drops so that the backside of the eye can be examined.

If the above tests show the sign of DR, then advanced tests can be done to know the state of the disease in detail:

  • Optical coherence tomography (OCT)
  • Widefield retinal photography
  • Fluorescein angiography

Prevention of DR

A diabetic patient can prevent DR by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which will help to keep sugar level, cholesterol, and blood pressure under control:

  • Healthy diet: It must contain vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and other fibrous foods.
  • Regular physical activity: Every day a minimum of 40 minutes of walking or light exercises or yoga is needed.
  • Control obesity: Maintaining proper body weight.
  • Regular health check: They should conduct health check-ups at regular intervals.

Treatment of DR

In the initial stage of DR, mostly a patient remains asymptomatic. If it gets detected due to regular eye check-ups, then strict controlling of the blood sugar level, cholesterol, and blood pressure will not allow to progress it to an advanced stage.

The treatment of DR in the advanced stage are:

  • Medications: VEGF inhibitors can slow down or reverse diabetic retinopathy.
  • Laser Therapy: It burns the abnormal blood vessels to shrink and disappear. It does not improve vision but prevents vision loss.
  • Surgery: In the very advanced stage of the disease, scar tissues can be formed on the retina. Scar tissues are a collection of cells and collagen that hinder vision. During surgery, the retina is pulled away from the back of the eye and scar tissues are removed from it.

Key Points

Well, nowadays google can find every answer but still miss some points every patient is different and how the disease is started and managed everything is different. INIGIMA Digital Screening analyses the pattern and symptoms of your health with deep data monitoring by analysing the Blood Sugar and Blood Pressure for a minimum of 6 months how the body responds with medicine and without a medicine then only you have to take a better and healthy decision.




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  3. Lechner J, O’Leary OE, Stitt AW. The pathology associated with diabetic retinopathy. Vision Res. 2017 Oct;139:7-14.
  4. Kollias AN, Ulbig MW. Diabetic retinopathy: Early diagnosis and effective treatment. Dtsch Arztebl Int. 2010 Feb;107(5):75-83; quiz 84.


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