A new study has found six out of 10 diabetics do not get regular eye exams, putting their vision at risk. Diabetes is a well-known risk factor for vision problems. Without regular monitoring, the eyes can undergo a host of changes, so of which may be irreversible, contributing to vision loss.
Going for a routine eye exam annually can prevent 95 percent of diabetes-related vision loss.
Lead author Dr. Ann Murchison said, “Vision loss is tragic, especially when it is preventable. That’s why we want to raise awareness and ensure people with diabetes understand the importance of regular eye exams.”
The study included nearly 2,000 people over the age of 40 with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. The researchers found that 58 percent of the study subjects did not go for regular eye exams.
Smokers and individuals with less severe cases of diabetes were less likely to go for eye exams.
Patients with diabetic retinopathy – just one of the vision problems associated with diabetes – were more likely to go for eye exams.
Dr. Rahul Khurana of the American Academy of Ophthalmology added, “People with diabetes need to know that they shouldn’t wait until they experience problems to get these exams. Getting your eyes checked by an ophthalmologist can reveal the signs of disease that patients aren’t aware of.”
November is Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month, so if you have diabetes this is a perfect time for you to get your vision checked and make eye exams part of your diabetic care routine.