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Sunday / July 14.
HomeminewsDiabetes Sufferers Need More Eye Checks

Diabetes Sufferers Need More Eye Checks

At least one million Australians have diabetes and after suffering the disease for a long time, most will develop the eye disease diabetic retinopathy, which, without treatment, can cause vision loss and blindness.

That’s why the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital and Orthoptics Australia have joined together to raise awareness of the importance of regular eye checks for people with diabetes as part of Orthoptic Awareness week last month. And although the public awareness campaign has ended, eye health professionals should continue to send out the message.

Manager of the Orthoptics Department at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital and President of the Orthoptics Australia, Associate Professor Zoran Georgievski, pointed out that diabetes damaged the retina and early detection of the disease could save people’s sight.

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…diabetec retinopathy among diabetics ranges from 35 per cent to 49 per cent…

“Laser treatment is successfully used at the Eye and Ear to treat diabetic retinopathy, but it cannot restore vision that is already lost.”

Australian studies have found that the prevalence of diabetic retinopathy among diabetics ranges from 35 per cent to 49 per cent and as there are many undiagnosed diabetics, it is possible that 200,000 people in Australia could be affected by diabetic retinopathy and are not be aware of it.

Therefore, the Eye and Ear and Orthoptics Australia encourages all people with diabetes to have a full eye examination at least every two years in order to prevent diabetic retinopathy and to reduce the incidence of vision loss.

The Centre of Eye Research Australia, research partner of the Eye and Ear Hospital, is currently recruiting for a major Australian study investigating the barriers to achieving optimal diabetes care.

If you have patients who are over 18 years of age who have Type 1 or 2 diabetes and would be willing to participate in this ground-breaking study ask them to contact the Eye and Ear Hospital on (AUS) 03 9929 8363.