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HealthInfo Canterbury

Overview of diabetes & your eyes

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Diabetes can damage your eyes, causing you to lose all or part of your sight. It can damage the retina at the back of your eye, known as diabetic retinopathy. You are also more likely to get glaucoma and cataracts.

You can get damaged eyes before you notice any change in your vision. Diabetic eye checks (retinal screening) can pick up early signs of damage so it can be treated. When diabetes eye damage is more severe it may not be treatable, and there is a risk you will lose your sight.

You can look after your eyes by:

Your GP can refer you for retinal screening and help if you have a sudden change in vision.

An optometrist can perform eye checks including retinal screening.

An ophthalmologist (eye doctor and surgeon) can perform eye checks and treat diabetic eye disease.

  HealthInfo recommends the following pages

On the next page: Eye problems with diabetes

Written by Canterbury optometrists. Adapted by HealthInfo clinical advisers. Last reviewed November 2019.


See also:


Low vision

Page reference: 609519

Review key: HIDYE-139181