Items in AFP with MESH term: Diabetic Retinopathy

The Visually Impaired Patient - Article

ABSTRACT: Blindness or low vision affects more than 3 million Americans 40 years and older, and this number is projected to reach 5.5 million by 2020. In addition to treating a patient's vision loss and comorbid medical issues, physicians must be aware of the physical limitations and social issues associated with vision loss to optimize health and independent living for the visually impaired patient. In the United States, the four most prevalent etiologies of vision loss in persons 40 years and older are age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy. Exudative macular degeneration is treated with laser therapy, and progression of nonexudative macular degeneration in its advanced stages may be slowed with high-dose antioxidant and zinc regimens. The value of screening for glaucoma is uncertain; management of this condition relies on topical ocular medications. Cataract symptoms include decreased visual acuity, decreased color perception, decreased contrast sensitivity, and glare disability. Lifestyle and environmental interventions can improve function in patients with cataracts, but surgery is commonly performed if the condition worsens. Diabetic retinopathy responds to tight glucose control, and severe cases marked by macular edema are treated with laser photocoagulation. Vision-enhancing devices can help magnify objects, and nonoptical interventions include special filters and enhanced lighting.


Common Causes of Vision Loss in Elderly Patients - Article

ABSTRACT: Vision loss among the elderly is a major health care problem. Approximately one person in three has some form of vision-reducing eye disease by the age of 65. The most common causes of vision loss among the elderly are age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataract and diabetic retinopathy. Age-related macular degeneration is characterized by the loss of central vision. Primary open-angle glaucoma results in optic nerve damage and visual field loss. Because this condition may initially be asymptomatic, regular screening examinations are recommended for elderly patients. Cataract is a common cause of vision impairment among the elderly, but surgery is often effective in restoring vision. Diabetic retinopathy may be observed in the elderly at the time of diagnosis or during the first few years of diabetes. Patients should undergo eye examinations with dilation when diabetes is diagnosed and annually thereafter.


Educational Guidelines for Achieving Tight Control and Minimizing Complications of Type 1 Diabetes - Article

ABSTRACT: Tight glucose control with intensive therapy in patients with type 1 diabetes (formerly known as juvenile-onset or insulin-dependent diabetes) can delay the onset and slow the progression of retinopathy, nephropathy and neuropathy. Optimal blood glucose control is defined by a target glycosylated hemoglobin level of less than 7 percent, a preprandial glucose level of 80 to 120 mg per dL (4.4 to 6.7 mmol per L) and a bedtime glucose level of 100 to 140 mg per dL (5.6 to 7.8 mmol per L). This article provides guidelines to help family physicians teach patients with type 1 diabetes how to achieve tight glucose control to help minimize complications. Guidelines include maintaining blood glucose levels at near normal by taking doses of short-acting insulin throughout the day supplemented by a nighttime dose of intermediate-acting insulin, monitoring blood glucose levels frequently, following a prudent diet, exercising regularly and effectively managing hypoglycemia, as well as empowering patients to lead their control efforts and rigorously controlling other risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Support from physicians, family members and friends is crucial to the success of a regimen of tight glucose control.


Vision Loss in Older Persons - Article

ABSTRACT: Family physicians have an essential role in assessing, identifying, treating, and preventing or delaying vision loss in the aging population. Approximately one in 28 U.S. adults older than 40 years is visually impaired. Vision loss is associated with depression, social isolation, falls, and medication errors, and it can cause disturbing hallucinations. Adults older than 65 years should be screened for vision problems every one to two years, with attention to specific disorders, such as diabetic retinopathy, refractive error, cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration. Vision-related adverse effects of commonly used medications, such as amiodarone or phosphodiesterase inhibitors, should be considered when evaluating vision problems. Prompt recognition and management of sudden vision loss can be vision saving, as can treatment of diabetic retinopathy, refractive error, cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration. Aggressive medical management of diabetes, hypertension, and hyperlipidemia; encouraging smoking cessation; reducing ultraviolet light exposure; and appropriate response to medication adverse effects can preserve and protect vision in many older persons. Antioxidant and mineral supplements do not prevent age-related macular degeneration, but may play a role in slowing progression in those with advanced disease.


Abnormal Ocular Findings - Photo Quiz


Retinal Changes and Visual Impairment - Photo Quiz


The Costs of Helping Patients with Type 1 Diabetes Achieve Tight Control - Editorials



Information From Industry