Diabetes is a very serious disease that can cause problems like blindness, heart disease, kidney failure and amputations. By taking good care of yourself through diet, exercise and special medications, you can control diabetes.

Diabetic eye disease, a complication of diabetes, can be treated before vision loss occurs. All people with diabetes need to get a dilated eye exam at least once a year.

The most common diabetic eye disease is diabetic retinopathy. It’s the leading cause of blindness in American adults. Diabetic retinopathy is caused by changes in the blood vessels of the retina which may result in vision loss or blindness.

Often there are no symptoms in the early stages of the disease. Vision may not change until the disease becomes severe. That is why regular eye exams for people with diabetes are so important—to catch the disease before it permanently damages your vision.