Diabetic Eye Disease Specialist

Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona -  - Ophthalmologist

Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona

Ophthalmologists & Optometrists located in Gilbert, Chandler, and Queen Creek, AZ

The high blood sugar levels diabetes causes can result in swelling and blood vessel damage in your eyes, which can eventually lead to diabetic eye disease and blindness. At Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona, home of MyEyesToday.com, in Gilbert, Chandler, and Queen Creek, Arizona, Kianoush Kian, MD, and Scott Wayment, OD, provide comprehensive exams and state-of-the-art testing to diagnose and monitor diabetic eye disease. If you have diabetes, call Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona or schedule an exam online today.

Diabetic Eye Disease Q & A

What is Diabetic Eye Disease? (Diabetic Retinopathy)

Diabetes can cause a variety of health complications. When you have elevated glucose levels, it can cause temporary swelling of the lens of your eye that leads to blurry vision. This usually subsides when you get your blood sugar levels under control. However, when unmanaged, diabetes can damage the blood vessels in your retina, which can cause a variety of problems that are often asymptomatic unless too late and catastrophic. This is why you should have annual exams to monitor your eyes if you have diabetes. 

Diabetic retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy develops when the blood vessels on your retina swell and leak. As the condition advances, your damaged blood vessels can close, which triggers new blood vessel growth.

Macular edema

Your macula is the center of your retina that enables you to see what’s in front of you and is essential to driving, reading, and seeing people’s faces. Diabetes can cause swelling (edema) in your macula, which can lead to partial or total vision loss. Unfortunately, the macula can be unaffected until the late stages of Diabetic Retinopathy, and so the patient will stay without symptoms until it is too late and severe, irreversible damage takes place. 

Diabetes also increases your risk of glaucoma and cataracts. 

What are the signs of diabetic eye disease?

Diabetic Retinopathy most often does not cause symptoms in the early stages, and by the time you develop any symptoms at all the damage may already be severe. The best way to monitor your eye health is to have regular eye exams at Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona. However, as diabetic eye disease progresses, you might develop symptoms, including:

  • Blurry vision
  • Straight lines appear wavy
  • Dark spots in your vision
  • Reduced color vision
  • Increased floaters
  • Flashes of light
  • Vision loss

If you notice any of these symptoms, especially if they begin suddenly or severely, call Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona at 480-632-2020 or online at MyEyesToday.com and make a same-day appointment for emergent attention.

What happens during a diabetic eye exam?

The doctors at Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona provide comprehensive diabetic eye exams. In addition to measuring your visual acuity and the standard tests for eye disease, they also carefully check your retina for signs of damage.

They usually dilate your pupils to get a clear look at your retinas and might use fundus photography to document the status of the retina. The doctors also use optical coherence tomography (OCT) to study your retinas in detail.

How is diabetic eye disease treated?

Depending on your needs, your doctor might suggest “anti-VEGF” medication to stop the growth of abnormal blood vessels or state-of-the-art laser treatments to shrink and remove abnormal or damaged blood vessels on your retina. 

Call Advanced Laser & Eye Center of Arizona at 480-632-2020 or schedule a diabetic eye exam online today at MyEyesToday.com.