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Diabetic retinopathy is a diabetes complication that affects eyes. It's caused by damage to the blood vessels of the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye (retina).
The condition can develop in anyone who has type 1 or type 2 diabetes. The longer you have diabetes and the less controlled your blood sugar is, the more likely you are to develop this eye complication. The risk of developing diabetic retinopathy is known to increase with age as well with less well controlled blood sugar and blood pressure level.
You might not have symptoms in the early stages of diabetic retinopathy. As the condition progresses, diabetic retinopathy symptoms may include:
1. Spots or dark strings floating in your vision (floaters)
2. Blurred vision
3. Fluctuating vision
4. Impaired colour vision
5. Dark or empty areas in your vision
6. Vision loss
Diabetic retinopathy usually affects both eyes.
1. Poor blood glucose control
2. Protein in urine
3. High blood pressure
4. Prolonged diabetes
5. Raised fats (triglycerides) in the blood
Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that damage the optic nerve, the health of which is vital for good vision. This damage is often caused by an abnormally high pressure in your eye.
Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness for people over the age of 60. It can occur at any age but is more common in older adults.
The signs and symptoms of glaucoma vary depending on the type and stage of your condition.
For example: Open-angle glaucoma
1. Patchy blind spots in your side (peripheral) or central vision, frequently in both eyes
2. Tunnel vision in the advanced stages
Acute angle-closure glaucoma
1. Severe headache
2. Eye pain
3. Nausea and vomiting
4. Blurred vision
5. Halos around lights
6. Eye redness
Because chronic forms of glaucoma can destroy vision before any signs or symptoms are apparent, be aware of these risk factors:
1. Having high internal eye pressure (intraocular pressure)
2. Being over age 60
3. Being black, Asian or Hispanic
4. Having a family history of glaucoma
5. Having certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and sickle cell anaemia
6. Having corneas that are thin in the centre
7. Being extremely nearsighted or farsighted
8. Having had an eye injury or certain types of eye surgery
9. Taking corticosteroid medications, especially eye drops, for a long time
A cataract is a dense, cloudy area that forms in the lens of the eye. A cataract begins when proteins in the eye form clumps that prevent the lens from sending clear images to the retina. The retina works by converting the light that comes through the lens into signals. It sends the signals to the optic nerve, which carries them to the brain.
It develops slowly and eventually interferes with your vision. You might end up with cataracts in both eyes, but they usually don’t form at the same time. Cataracts are common in older people.
Symptoms of Cataracts
Common symptoms of cataracts include:
1. Blurry vision
2. Problem seeing at night
3. Seeing colours as faded
4. Increased sensitivity to glare
5. Halos surrounding lights
6. Double vision in the affected eye
7. Need for frequent changes in prescription glasses
1. An overproduction of oxidants, which are oxygen molecules that have been chemically altered due to normal daily life
3. Ultraviolet radiation
4. Long-term use of steroids and other medications
5. Certain diseases, such as diabetes
7. Radiation therapy
1. Older age
2. Heavy use of alcohol
5. High blood pressure
6. Previous eye injuries
7. Family history of cataracts
8. Too much sun exposure
10. exposure to radiation from X-rays and cancer treatments
Myopia, also known as nearsightedness, is a common ocular disorder, which is considered a global problem because of the economic and social costs. It affects typically school-age children and seems to progress the most between ages 8 and 15 due to the continuous growth of the eye during childhood.
Family linkage analysis, genome-wide association studies, and next-generation sequencing studies as well as a high correlation among monozygotic twins compared to dizygotic twins show that myopia has a genetic component
The most obvious symptom of nearsightedness is blurry vision when you look at faraway objects. Children may have trouble seeing the blackboard at school. Adults may not be able to see street signs clearly while driving. Other signs of nearsightedness include:
2. Eyes that hurt or feel tired
Retinitis pigmentosa is a group of related eye disorders that cause progressive vision loss. These disorders affect the retina, which is the layer of light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. In people with retinitis pigmentosa, vision loss occurs as the light-sensing cells of the retina gradually deteriorate.
The first sign of retinitis pigmentosa is usually a loss of night vision, which becomes apparent in childhood. Problems with night vision can make it difficult to navigate in low light. Later, the disease causes blind spots to develop in the side (peripheral) vision. Over time, these blind spots merge to produce tunnel vision. The disease progresses over years or decades to affect central vision, which is needed for detailed tasks such as reading, driving, and recognizing faces. In adulthood, many people with retinitis pigmentosa become legally blind.
The signs and symptoms of retinitis pigmentosa are most often limited to vision loss.
Retinitis Pigmentosa Symptoms
1. Loss of night vision. Night blindness is when you cannot see anything in the dark.
2. Gradual loss of peripheral (side) vision. This is known as “tunnel vision.” You may find you bump into things as you move around.
3. Loss of central vision. Some people also have problems with central vision.
4. Problems with colour vision.
Ocular hypertension is the result of poor drainage of the aqueous humour (a fluid inside the eye). Essentially, this means that too much fluid enters the eye without being drained, causing high amounts of pressure to build up.
An injury to the eye, certain diseases and some medications may raise eye pressure. Your risk of developing ocular hypertension increases if you have a family history of ocular hypertension or glaucoma, have diabetes, are over the age of 40, are African American or are very near-sighted.
Symptoms of Ocular Hypertension
Because there are no symptoms with ocular hypertension, it is impossible for a patient to notice it on their own. However, if a regular eye exam schedule is maintained, an eye care professional can find it in routine testing.
During a regular eye exam, intraocular pressure is measured using a device called a tonometer. If elevated pressure is measured above 21 mm Hg twice, an eye care professional may diagnose ocular hypertension.
Ocular Hypertension Causes
1. Elevated intraocular pressure is a concern in people with ocular hypertension because it is one of the main risk factors for glaucoma.
2. High pressure inside the eye is caused by an imbalance in the production and drainage of fluid in the eye (aqueous humour). The channels that normally drain the fluid from inside the eye do not function properly. More fluid is continually being produced but cannot be drained because of the improperly functioning drainage channels. This results in an increased amount of fluid inside the eye, thus raising the pressure.
3. Another way to think of high pressure inside the eye is to imagine a water balloon. The more water that is put into the balloon, the higher the pressure inside the balloon. The same situation exists with too much fluid inside the eye—the more fluid, the higher the pressure. Also, just like a water balloon can burst if too much water is put into it, the optic nerve in the eye can be damaged by too high of a pressure.
4. People with very thick but normal corneas often have eye pressure measuring at the high levels of normal or even a little bit higher. Their pressures may actually be lower and normal but the thick corneas cause a falsely high reading during measurements.