The best way to prevent vision loss and slow the progression of diabetic retinopathy (damage to the blood vessels in the eye caused by high blood sugar levels) is to control blood sugars, maintain healthy blood pressure and lower LDL cholesterol levels, and get your eyes screened on a regular basis by an optometrist or ophthalmologist. Optometrists are professionally trained eye care providers who have the knowledge and skills to perform dilated eye exams for retinopathy assessment. Although retinal eye screening can be conducted by either an optometrist or an ophthalmologist, the scope of practice of ophthalmology covers more advanced eye care. It may therefore be more appropriate to have patients screened by an optometrists, who will identify if further therapy or referral for advanced care is needed.

Champlain Diabetes Services released a Newsletter and a Facts About dedicated to diabetic retinopathy in 2011. To access these resources, click here.