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Diabetic Retinopathy: 13% of those with high glucose levels are at higher risk | Study

Retinopathy is the most common complication in patients with diabetes mellitus especially the insulin-dependent type (IDDM) and is a major cause of blindness in the population of working age

Health Desk Written By: Health Desk New Delhi Published on: April 26, 2023 18:50 IST
Diabetic Retinopathy
Image Source : FREEPIK Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic Retinopathy: Lifestyle plays an important role in the development of diabetic retinopathy. Patients with diabetes often develop ophthalmic complications, such as corneal abnormalities, glaucoma, iris neovascularization, cataracts, and neuropathies. The most common and potentially most blinding of these complications, however, is diabetic retinopathy. 3 million people above the age of 40 are at risk of blindness due to diabetes in the country, according to an all-India study published in The Lancet.

The corresponding author of the study, Sobha Sivaprasad shared, "Diabetic retinopathy is the commonest complication of diabetes and a common cause of visual impairment. However, vision is only affected late in the disease, so retinopathy should be picked up by screening the retina regularly using retinal cameras. Before this publication, there was no India-wide data on the prevalence of diabetic retinopathy and in particular, the vision-threatening complications".

The study showed that there were no significant differences between urban and rural residents for diabetic retinopathy. Compared with individuals having undiagnosed diabetes, the study found a higher prevalence of diabetic retinopathy and VTDR in individuals with known diabetes, with prevalence being significantly lower in states with low socio-demographic index (SDI) and epidemiological transition level (ETL).

Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is a common chronic microvascular diabetic complication, and it is the leading cause of visual impairment among working adults in the Western world. Apart from visual morbidity, the presence of DR may indicate microcirculatory dysfunction in other organ systems. Therefore, investigating the prevalence of DR is important. The prevalence of diabetes mellitus (DM) and prediabetes increases with increasing age. The prevalence of prediabetes among Chinese adults aged over 45 years was dramatically higher than in those aged between 20 and 30 years. However, type 2 diabetes (T2DM) is often not diagnosed until complications appear. 

Lifestyle plays an important role in the development of DR, and the lifestyle of Guangzhou is different from that of other cities. The Cantonese prefer eating rice porridge, but not spicy foods. The individual postprandial blood glucose level dramatically increases after eating rice porridge in a short time period, which increases the burden of pancreatic island beta cell function.


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