Retinopathy & Eye Disease

a common diabetic eye disease

According to a recent study from Prevent Blindness, more than 8 million Americans have diabetic retinopathy, with total cases projected to increase 63% by 2050. Individuals with diabetes are 25 times more likely to become blind than those without diabetes, according to the National Eye Institute. And, people with diabetes are 40% more likely to develop glaucoma and 60% more likely to develop cataracts than those without diabetes.

Anyone with diabetes is at risk of developing diabetic eye disease that can permanently damage their vision and even lead to blindness. There are certain factors that can put some at higher risk for vision loss, including age, duration of the disease, blood sugar control, ethnicity, hypertension, pregnancy, and renal disease.

Retinopathy often has NO early warning signs, making standard vision testing insufficient and potentially misleading to patients for early onset pathology. Fortunately, the blinding effects of diabetes can be lessened if detected and treated early.

More Consequences of Diabetes

According to recent national surveys, diabetes was associated with an increased risk for several complications. Below are the number of events per 10,000 among adults derived from data in 2010.

Lower-Extremity Amputation

28.4 (per 10,000) for patients with diabetes, 2.7 for those without diabetes.1

Kidney Disease
End-stage Renal Disease

20.0 for patients with diabetes, 3.3 for those without diabetes.1

Heart Attack
Acute Myocardial Infarction

45.5 for patients with diabetes, 25.8 for those without diabetes.1


52.9 for patients with diabetes, 34.3 for those without diabetes.1 Diabetes tends to lower "good" cholesterol and raise triglyceride and "bad" cholesterol levels, which increases the risk for head disease and stroke.2

Colorectal Cancer

People with type 2 diabetes have an increase risk of developing colorectal cancer. Individuals with type 2 diabetes also tend to have a less favorable prognosis after diagnosis.3

Peripheral Artery Disease

If you have diabetes, you're much more likely to have PAD, a heart attack or a stroke. But you can cut your chances of having those problems by taking special care of your blood vessels.4