The most common eye disease afflicting people with diabetes. This disease is caused by changes in the blood vessels of the retina and is a leading cause of blindness in American adults. In some people with diabetic retinopathy, retinal blood vessels may swell and leak fluid. In others, abnormal new blood vessels grow on the surface of the retina.
Disorder of the innermost coat of the back of the eyeball. Seen most frequently in people who have had poorly controlled insulin dependent diabetes mellitus for several years. See Diabetes mellitus: insulin and noninsulin dependent. Characterized by microscopic dilation of capillary vessels, hemorrhages, exudates and the formation of new blood vessels.
Retinal changes accompanying long-standing diabetes mellitus. Early stage is background retinopathy. May advance to proliferative retinopathy, which includes the growth of abnormal new blood vessels (neovascularization). Leading cause of visual impairment among working-age Americans. Diabetes also can cause cataracts.