Signature Optometry is your go-to optometrist in the Fresno area. We cover all services related to the eye, from our optical boutique to our innovative eye therapy techniques. One common concern we have is the health effects of having diabetes on the eyes. According to the World Health Organization, 422 million people were living with diabetes in 2014. Diabetics have a myriad of health concerns to keep in check while taking their appropriate medications. The key culprit that causes damage in the eye is high blood sugar levels. People who have poor blood sugar management typically and eventually suffer the consequences via detrimental eye complications. Most often, the retina is the source of these disorders, called retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy is a disease caused by damaged blood vessels within and behind the retina.


Nonproliferative retinopathy is the most common form of damage seen by your qualified Fresno eye doctor. This class of eye damage involves the leaking of damaged blood vessels into the eye. Typically, wear and tear is present in the eye but the patient may not feel any ill effects. This classification may result in a multitude of negative changes in the eye, including:

  • Macular edema — fluid can leak into the macula, which is the part of the eye where focusing happens. This can blur vision from swelling and is often the only noticeable vision issue by diabetics.
  • Hemorrhaging in retina — when blood leaks in small amounts into the retina. This process progressively leads toward more serious issues down the road.
  • Microaneurysms — these are small bulges in the blood vessels. Any blood vessels with this issue will typically start to leak.
  • Macular ischemia — this occurs when the blood vessels in the macula close. The result from this lack of blood is the inability to keep your vision focused.
  • Proliferative

    After years of damage, some patients progress to the level called proliferative retinopathy. In this stage, the blood vessels around your retina begin to close off and shut down. Your body will react by producing new blood vessels to supply the eye with adequate blood. After such severe damage, the new vessels created are abnormal. Their unstable nature leads to more blood leaking and ultimately, scarring. The introduction and subsequent shrinking of scar tissue leads to more issue such as retinal distortion and retinal detachment. At the proliferative level, the retina faces a number of possible, serious conditions.

    Diabetics are at a much higher risk of developing unwanted eye issues. Even with proper blood sugar levels and optimal control, diabetics still are much more likely to develop these issues. Many patients are unaware of any retinopathy occurring within their retinas. The best practice to prevent retinal complications is to have your eye doctor perform annual checks. Proper diagnosis and treatment can be very effective at delaying or possibly even reversing the negative effects of retinopathy. If you happen to be looking for an optometrist in Fresno, look no further! Signature Optometry is your source for any optical service, including eye therapy. Contact us today for information on how we can help you see clearly!