About Diabetic Macular Edema
Diabetic Macular Edema is a leading cause of blindness. In diabetes mellitus, the body does not use and store sugar properly. High blood-sugar levels can damage blood vessels in the retina, causing diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic Macular Edema (DME) is a swelling, or thickening of the macula, from these damaged leaking retinal vessels. The macula is a small area in the center of the retina that is primarily responsible for our central vision.
Diabetic Macular Edema Symptoms
The most common symptom of Diabetic Macular Edema is distorted, blurry vision or vision loss. Vision loss from Diabetic Macular Edema occurs in a patient’s central vision when the macula begins to thicken or swell.
Diagnosis and Tests for DMEs
Diabetic Macular Edema can be discovered during a comprehensive eye exam. An ophthalmologist or retinal specialist will be able to look at your eye and see signs of swelling or damage. Dilation will allow our doctors to get a full view of the retina.
There are also ancillary tests that can be performed such as optical coherence tomography, which scans the back of the eye and helps doctors see where swelling is occurring and monitor changes.
Diabetic Macular Edema Treatments
Some treatments for DME can require multiple doctor visits and Intravitreal injections in the eye, medication, laser treatments, and control of blood sugar.
At Retinal Consultants of Arizona, we are also able to use a new implant, the size of a rice grain, in saving vision and time. One implant can treat patients for up to three years, helping stop and in some cases reverse damage.
We also often participate in clinical trials that work to develop new and more effective treatments for conditions like Macular Edema.
For more information on how we can best treat your condition, it is important to come in for a retinal evaluation with one our ophthalmologists.
Can Diabetic Macular Edema cause blindness?
Diabetic Macular Edema is a leading cause of blindness. If left untreated, diabetic macular edema can cause severe vision loss and even blindness.
Is Diabetic Macular Edema related to Diabetic Retinopathy?
Diabetic Macular Edema can be linked to Diabetic Retinopathy, which is another retinal condition common for diabetic patients which affects the blood vessels in the retina.
Can you get Diabetic Macular Edema if you aren’t diabetic?
Yes, while Diabetic Macular Edema is often caused from complications related to Diabetic Retinopathy, Macular Edema can also stem from other retinal conditions or eye surgeries.
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Conditions We Treat
Our ophthalmologists are experienced in diagnosing and treating many retinal conditions.