Diabetic Retinopathy Treatment from Our Optometrists in West Des Moines

Diabetic retinopathy is a leading cause of vision loss among patients with diabetes mellitus.  As many as a third of the 285 million diabetics worldwide have signs of this disorder, according to our West Des Moines eye doctors.  Monitoring on a regular basis at Lock Family Eye Care Center is crucial for diagnosing and treating this condition.

Diabetic Retinopathy

Overview of Diabetic Retinopathy

This disorder most commonly develops in both eyes and strikes individuals with either Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.  Diabetic retinopathy occurs when a patient’s diabetes is uncontrolled over time.  The longer the individual is diabetic, the greater the chance of developing retinopathy.  Without treatment, blindness might occur.

This disorder damages blood vessels in the retina, resulting in leakage of blood and additional fluid.  Quite often, patients in the earliest stages of the disease do not detect any signs of it.  Over time, these symptoms are likely to emerge:

  • Vision that is blurry or cloudy
  • Appearance of spots or floaters
  • Increasing difficulty with night vision
  • Black spots or holes in the field of vision
  • Difficulty perceiving colors

Treatment Options

A diabetic patient’s first step in vision care should be undergoing a comprehensive exam from one of our two West Des Moines optometrists.  Our doctors review health history, assess structures in each eye, measure visual acuity, and check internal ocular pressure. 

If a diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy is made, the disease’s progression determines which treatment option is best for the condition.  When retinopathy has advanced and blood vessels leak fluid into the retina, swelling results. 

The objective of treatment is always to stop the disorder from advancing.  One way to accomplish this is getting better control of the patient’s underlying diabetes. 

In the earliest stages of diabetic retinopathy, treatment might consist solely of monitoring.  One therapeutic option is photocoagulation.  This procedure utilizes bursts of light from a laser to cause small retinal burns and seal leaks from damaged blood vessels.  When there are an extensive amount of abnormal vessels, scattering burns causes those vessels to shrink and ultimately disappear.  Some patients with cloudy vision as a result of diabetic retinopathy may benefit from a referral for a vitrectomy.

Schedule an Exam with Our West Des Moines Optometrist

We have provided high-quality optometric care to West Des Moines families since 2006.  Our two Lock Family Eye Care optometrists offer both pediatric and adult services for vision correction and eye health.  Be sure to call our office today at 515-267-1312 to schedule your next vision exam.

Contact Us

chiropractic spine


Learn how we can help with your pain