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People with diabetes are unfortunately at a higher risk for numerous diabetic eye diseases, which can lead to severe vision loss and sometimes even blindness. Diabetic retinopathy is the most common eye disease that damages the blood vessels in the retina. It usually affects both eyes and occurs in people with Type I and Type II diabetes. There are no common symptoms present during the early stages of diabetic retinopathy. If you experience blurred vision or "floating" spots, contact your ophthalmologist as soon as possible.

When should an eye exam be scheduled?

  • If you have any blurriness, floaters, or distortion in your vision, an exam should be scheduled as soon as possible with your ophthalmologist.
  • If you were diagnosed with diabetes at 30 years old or younger, you should have your first eye exam no later than five years after diagnosis.
  • If you were diagnosed with diabetes after the age of 30, you should have an exam within a few months of diagnosis.
  • If you are pregnant and have diabetes, an exam should be scheduled during the first trimester.
  • If you have high-risk conditions (diabetes for more than 20 years, kidney failure, high risk for vision loss), an eye exam should be scheduled immediately.

For more information about Diabetic Retinopathy, please click here.