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Home » Eye Care Services » Eye Disease Management » Diabetic Eye Disease

Diabetic Eye Disease

Woman with Diabetes, Happy with her eye care

Diabetes is associated with several eye health issues including cataracts and glaucoma, but the most well known diabetic eye disease is diabetic retinopathy.

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.

Richie ReOpeningPlan WebsitePopUp

Dear Friends,

Although Richie Eye Clinic has remained open for urgent and emergent care through this tough time, Governor Walz has now declared that Minnesotans can resume routine eye visits and elective eye surgeries. We are ready with our “new normal.” Here is our plan:

  1. We ask all patients entering the clinic to bring your own cloth mask or face covering. We have a limited supply for those who do not have their own. Our team will “masked up” as well.
  2. Upon arrival, we will ask you some screening questions, check your temperature, and ask you to sanitize your hands. If you have a cough, cold, fever, or just don’t feel good, please stay home.
  3. Feel free to use our new virtual check-in; call or text us from your car and we will advise you when we are ready to escort you to a room.
  4. As always, we sanitize each room after every patient.
  5. Our Optical is open to serve you by appointment
  6. Please practice “social distancing” during your entire visit.

We are excited to add that our Northfield location will resume clinic hours starting Monday May 18th, as well.

We look forward to seeing you soon.

Mike Richie