Diabetic Retinopathy is an eye disease that has been linked to diabetics. It is caused when high blood sugar levels cause damage to the blood vessel in the retina. These blood vessels will swell, close, leak or cause new abnormal blood cells to grow. This can cause vision loss.
What are the Two Stages of Diabetic Retinopathy
Non-Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy (NPDR)
Stage One of Diabetic Retinopathy is NPDR. During this phase, blood vessels in the back of the eye leak causing swelling. When this swelling occurs in the central part of the retina called the macula, it’s referred to as macular edema. Macular edema is the leading cause of vision loss during the NPDR Stage.
It may also cause the blood vessels in the back of the eye to completely shut off, this is called macular ischemia and it can also cause blurring and vision loss.
Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy (PDR)
The second stage is more advanced and begins when new blood cells begin to grow within the retina, a process called neovascularization. As these new vessels begin to grow, they can bleed into the part of your eye called the vitreous, or can form scar tissue, causing a detached retina. PDR should be taken seriously as it can very quickly lead to loss of vision.