Diabetes mellitus can cause circulatory disturbances in the area of small blood vessels (microcirculatory disturbances). These also affect the eyes and can cause significant visual problems, such as reading difficulties, glare, inability to drive, etc., due to the involvement of the retina., lead.
Early forms can be detected by the ophthalmologist during the annual eye examinations, even if the visual acuity is still good.
The most proven treatment for certain forms of diabetic retinopathy is laser treatment. An early optimal adjustment of the diabetes and accompanying factors, such as high blood prere and elevated blood lipids, is very important.
Cataract or cataract
Cataract is a clouding of the lens of any type and cause. The clouding obstructs the light path. Affected people notice that their visual acuity decreases and that they see foggy and are more and more blinded. Increasing lens-related myopia can also occur, when mainly the lens nucleus becomes cloudy (then it is even possible to read without glasses again temporarily).
Treatment is by surgery, which is one of the great advances in modern medicine. The opacities of the lens are removed, and almost always an artificial lens is implanted in the eye.
If, usually at an advanced age, other eye diseases are present in addition to the cataract, it should not be expected that these will also be eliminated by cataract surgery.
Glaucoma or glaucoma
This is a group (with different causes) of optic nerve diseases, which are associated with certain visual field failures and optic nerve changes visible to the ophthalmologist, and usually (but not always) with increased eye prere.
The onset is usually gradual and painless. This is why it is very important to be examined regularly by an ophthalmologist, in order to detect the beginnings of this condition. But there are (much rarer) acute forms with visual disturbances, headache and very high prere, which absolutely require an emergency consultation with an ophthalmologist!
Treatment of all forms of the disease can only be carried out by an ophthalmologist.
The center of the retina, the place of sharpest vision, is called the macula. In old age. Already from ca. 50 years of age), changes can occur in this area. These result in the partial or total loss of central visual acuity. Vision in the periphery is usually not affected. Due to distortions. failures in the center becomes u.a.a. reading is difficult, also faces can – depending on the distance – be recognized worse. Color and contrast vision can also be affected. When there is no cause other than aging, this condition is called AMD (age-related macular degeneration).
One distinguishes 2 types of AMD, a dry and a wet form. But these can also merge into each other. Since in certain stages there is also the possibility of therapeutic and prophylactic measures, it is important to visit the ophthalmologist regularly and especially when changes occur.
Besides AMD, there are also rarer forms of macular diseases, which can occur even in younger people.
RP Retinitis pigmentosa
RP is a genetic disease of the retina. It includes different types of inheritance. It is not uncommon that this disease is only detected in adulthood.
The first sign of RP is night blindness. There is a gradual death of the light-sensitive photoreceptor cells in the eye. In the course of the disease the visual field becomes smaller and smaller, a so-called tube vision develops. Those affected often also suffer severely from glare. During the examination, the ophthalmologist usually finds quite typical pigmentary changes of the retina.
To date, there are no medical measures that can cure or effectively delay this disease. The progression of the disease and the risk of blindness are quite different in different types of inheritance.