National Diabetes Week (13-19 July)
Macular Disease Foundation Australia is calling on all Australians living with diabetes to have a comprehensive eye exam at least every 2 years, or more often if recommended by their optometrist or ophthalmologist.
If you have diabetes, you can have damage to the retina at the back of the eye but not have any symptoms.
It is essential that those with diabetes have regular eye examinations to detect changes early so treatment can begin before irreversible vision loss occurs.
- More than a third of people with diabetes will develop some form of diabetic eye disease in their lifetime.
- Diabetic eye disease is one of the most common complications of diabetes.
- Currently, up to 50% of Australians with diabetes do not undergo eye examinations at the recommended frequency of every 2 years.
- Almost everyone with type 1 diabetes and more than 60 per cent of those with type 2 diabetes will develop some form of diabetes-related eye disease within 20 years of diagnosis.
“There is a significant need for Australians to be more aware of diabetes related eye disease, and the importance of regular eye checks to ensure early detection, diagnosis, early intervention and/or treatment,” said Julie Heraghty, Foundation Chief Executive Officer. “In almost all cases, this will help prevent vision loss.”
For a FREE information booklet on diabetes and eye disease, prevention and treatments call Macular Disease Foundation Australia. Free call number: 1800 111 709.
For more information on diabetes, including a test to estimate your risk of developing diabetes, visit Diabetes Australia.
1 Out of sight – a report into diabetic eye disease in Australia. Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute and Centre for Eye Research Australia (CERA). September 2013
14 July 2014