Reducing the Diabetic Patients’ Risk of Vision Loss Due to Diabetic Retinopathy

Reducing the Diabetic Patients’ Risk of Vision Loss Due to Diabetic Retinopathy

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Diabetes is a multi-systemic disease that causes damage to both large and small blood vessels throughout the body. This damage can lead to many well-known complications such as cardiovascular disease, kidney failure, and stroke, but it can also lead to vision loss and even blindness due to a condition called diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy, in which damage in the blood vessels of the retina occurs, is the leading cause of blindness in American adults (Noble & Chaudhary, 2010). Diabetic retinopathy is a very manageable disease, so the notion that so many diabetic patients still suffer from vision loss implies that there is a problem in the care diabetic patients are receiving from their healthcare providers. The following research aims to inform health care providers on the comprehensive care diabetic patients require in order to reduce the risk of vision loss due to diabetic retinopathy; this includes understanding the disease’s progression, diagnosing diabetes and diabetic retinopathy in the early stages, scheduling regular ophthalmologic check-ups, managing the patients’ blood pressure and blood glucose, administering laser eye treatments, and appropriately utilizing rehabilitation services for their patients.
Diabetic retinopathy is a progressive disease in which there are four stages: Mild Nonproliferative Retinopathy, Moderate Nonproliferative Retinopathy, Severe Nonproliferative Retinopathy, and Proliferative Retinopathy. In stage two Moderate Nonproliferative Retinopathy, the tiny blood vessels that nourish the retina become blocked. As the condition continues to progress, more and more blood vessels become blocked and the retina sends signals for more blood vessels to be made. These new vessels break easily, le...


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...tinopathy. The Journal of the American Medical Association, 298(8), 902-916. doi:10.1001/jama.298.8.902.
National Eye Institute. (2012). Facts About Diabetic Retinopathy. Retrieved from http://www.nei.nih.gov/health/diabetic/retinopathy.asp
Noble, J., & Chaudhary, V. (2010). Diabetic retinopathy. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 182(15), 1646. doi: 10.1503/cmaj.090536.
O'Shea, L. (2010). A practical guide to diagnosing type 2 diabetes. Practice Nurse, 39(11), 12-17.
Wallymahmed, M. (2013). Encouraging people with diabetes to get the most from blood glucose monitoring. Journal of Diabetes Nursing, 17(1), 6-13.
Wattanakorn, K., Deenan, A., Puapan, S., & Kraenzle, J. (2013). Effects of an eating behavior modification program on Thai people with diabetes and obesity: A randomized clinical trial. Pacific Rim International Journal of Nursing Research, 17(4), 356-357.

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