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Home » Eye Care Services » Management of Ocular Diseases » Treating Diabetic Retinopathy

Treating Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is an eye disease that only affects diabetics. It occurs when the fragile vascular network that supplies the retina – the light sensitive tissue at the back of the eye that helps us see – begins to swell or leak. During the beginning stages of the disease, there may be no noticeable symptoms, so it’s important to have your eyes checked at least once a year, if you have diabetes.

Once symptoms of diabetic retinopathy do develop, they can include: dark or black spots in your visual field, or blurry vision, and it increases over time. This is a result of bleeding at the back of the eye, which prevents a clear image from being transmitted from the retina to the brain.

Whether you have type 1, type 2, or even just gestational diabetes, you are at risk for developing diabetic retinopathy. The longer you have had the disease, the greater the risk. It is essential to keep your blood sugar levels under control to prevent vision loss, and this may require a trip back to your primary care physician.

Treating diabetic retinopathy can include vitrectomy, replacing the inner gel-like substance that supports the eyeball structure, and laser surgery.

Special thanks to the EyeGlass Guide, for informational material that aided in the creation of this website. Visit the EyeGlass Guide today!

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An important notice from Dr. St. Pierre: Today, optometrists in Ontario start Job Action. Ever ytime a patient walks through my door for an exam, it costs me on average $80 (staff, PPE, office supplies, occupation costs) to see that person. That’s before I get paid for my time. The Ontario government pays me $25.15 to perform a partial exam and does not allow me to bill the patient any more. That means every time I see a patient for an OHIP covered eye exam, I am subsidizing the cost of that eye exam out of my own pocket. This is not sustainable. As a small business owner in the time of COVID-19, I am struggling to provide quality eyecare to my community with the current OHIP funding agreement. As of today, all patient driven partial exams and MEE exams will no longer be booked in my clinic, but referred elsewhere. Thank you for your understanding.