Managing diabetic retinopathy
Byron J. Hoogwerf, MD
Z. Nicholas Zakov, MDAddress reprint requests to Z.N.Z, Retina Associates of Cleveland, Inc., 26900 Cedar Road #303, Cleveland, Ohio 44122
Diabetic retinopathy is a leading cause of visual impairment and blindness. The disease is more likely in patients with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, and the incidence is higher in diabetes of long duration. In background diabetic retinopathy, the vascular changes are confined to the retina; in proliferative retinopathy, vessels grow onto the posterior vitreous surface or wedge between the retina and the vitreous. Diagnostic accuracy is more likely with an ophthalmologic consultation. A team approach between the ophthalmologist and the primary care physician is recommended for effective overall management of these patients.