One aspect of our work at the Center for Vision Research is to understand how diabetes leads to visual impairment.
In his lab, Dr. Eduardo Solessio studies the progression of vision loss in diabetes.
The goal is to identify early vision losses that may be an important predictor of impending retinopathy. This is especially important because evidence of subtle, early loss of vision may help convince patients to adhere to strict glycemic controls at very early stages of the disease.
Understanding how early vision loss relates to retinal pathology may point to more effective tests and early treatment.
What is Diabetic Retinopathy?
Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness in working-age Americans, diagnosed in about 65,000 diabetics each year. Most cases of diabetic retinopathy are related to Type 2 diabetes, though anyone with Type 1 diabetes or Type 2 diabetes can develop the disease.
In diabetic retinopathy, uncontrolled blood sugar damages tiny blood vessels in the retina causing mild to moderate blurred vision and night blindness, among other symptoms. Over time, and particularly if blood sugar levels are not carefully controlled, these changes can result in blindness. Diabetic Retinopathy is almost always bilateral.
Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy include:
- Blurred vision and gradual vision loss
- Floaters, or dark strings in line of vision
- Shadows or missing areas of vision
- Difficulty seeing at nighttime
- Why is Research Important?
Why is Research Important
Diabetes is one of the fastest growing diseases in America today affecting over 20 million adults and children.