How common is it for somebody to get diabetic retinopathy?

About one-third. The incidence of diabetic retinopathy is about 1/3 of diabetics according to government statistics. The condition is related to how well the diabetes is controlled and if you have controlled any tendency toward high blood pressure. Take care of both of these conditions and you are less likely to get the retinopathy.
Sometimes. Diabetic retinopathy is a leakage and abnormal growth of blood vessels in the back of the eye. It can cause serious loss of vision but treatment is available. To get it you first need to be diabetic, and to be diabetic for many years (at least 4-6), and to control your diabetes poorly. All diabetics need a regular eye examination to detect and initiate treatment for this.

Related Questions

Do a lot of people get diabetic retinopathy?

About one-third. The incidence of diabetic retinopathy is about 1/3 of diabetics according to government statistics. The condition is related to how well the diabetes is controlled and if you have controlled any tendency toward high blood pressure. Take care of both of these conditions and you are less likely to get the retinopathy. Read more...
See below. Uncontrolled diabetes mellitus (high blood sugar) causes the retinal vessels to leak. This leads to swelling and bleeding and scarring in the retina, and is a major cause of blindness globally. This requires the help of a retina specialist for treatment. Read more...

Do lots of people get diabetic retinopathy, or is it unusual?

Very common. Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 20–74 years. In 2005–2008, 4.2 million (28.5%) people with diabetes aged 40 years or older had diabetic retinopathy, and of these, 655, 000 (4.4% of those with diabetes) had advanced diabetic retinopathy that could lead to severe vision loss. Read more...
Not unusual. Retinopathy is one of the consequences of uncontrolled diabetes and is one of the most common causes of blindness in the US. Read more...

What happens when you have diabetic retinopathy once and get it again?

IT NEVER WENT AWAY. To begin with. Once you develop it, its there for the long run. Read more...
Retina damage. It is rare for diabetic retinopathy to go away completely once it has been diagnosed. Treatment of the retina with laser or medications, in addition to good blood sugar and blood pressure control, can stabilize the disease process. Worsening of diabetic retinopathy is usually an indication of poor systemic control of the diabetes, and can lead to damage of retinal tissue and vision loss. Read more...

My sister says she has diabetic retinopathy. Are family members more likely to get the same thing?

Yes and no. Whether or not one gets diabetic retinopathy is related to how well the diabetes is controlled. The presence of diabetic retinopathy in any other family members would be related to how well their diabetes is controlled. Read more...
Duration and control. The longer you have diabetes, usually more than 10 years and worse the sugar control is, the higher the risk. If you and other family members are diabetic, then you are at risk. Diabetic retinopathy results in leakage and bleeding from retinal blood vessels from years of high blood sugars. Without proper treatment, this can lead to visual impairment . Read more...
Diabetic retinopathy. Family tendenciesare the gifts that keep on giving. Make sure that you get your blood evaluated and get checked on a regular basis. Early detection and treatment can prevent long term problems. Read more...

Can children get diabetic retinopathy? I think that diabetic retinopathy usually only happens after you've had diabetes for years, but my son has had it since he was 5. He's 15 now, so is he at higher risk? .

Yes, . Yes, they can. Fortunately, it turns out that earlier onset of type 1 diabetes is associated with a lower risk of retinopathy even after years of the disease as compared to children with onset of diabetes after puberty. But the longer anyone has diabetes and the worse the glucose control the higher the risk. But it would be distinctly uncommon for him to have retinopathy at this age however. The challenge is for him to take charge of his diabetes since as a parent, especially at this age, one can only do so much. Jdrf may be of help in your area. Read more...
As . As more time goes by, it is more likely that d.R. Will show up. Tight sugar control is the best way to prevent this! Read more...
Usually . Usually it takes over 10 years of diabetes before signs of retinopathy occur. Since your son has had diabetes for about 10 years, his risk is higher than when he first was diagnosed with diabetes. I would make sure he has a dilated eye exam every year to screen for any retinopathy. Read more...

Do I have to see an md to get checked for diabetic retinopathy?

Diabetic retinopathy. This is in the treatment expertise of an ophthalmologist. Read more...
Depends. An optometrist (od) or an ophthalmologist (md) can check you for diabetic retinopathy. If they see any they should send you to a retina specialist (eye md who is fellowship trained for medical and surgical treatment of retinal diseases). Read more...
OD/MD. You can see an optometrist or an ophthalmologist. As long as you get a dilated eye exam annually. Read more...

Is it possible for a 16-18 year old to get diabetic retinopathy and go blind?

Yes. With grossly uncontrolled diabetes over a long time, this is possible. Read more...
Not common. Most young diabetics will take at least 5 years before the diabetes can affect the retina- the light sensitive eye that is most commonly involved. As a specialist, i rarely see diabetics less than 20 years of age who need treatment, let alone have such severe eye disease that they goes blind. Read more...

I have diabetic retinopathy. Could I please get some suggestions on how to lower my blood sugar?

Blood sugar. Eliminate all refined carbohydrates (white sugar, white flour, white rice). Eliminate all fruit juices. Consume only complex carbohydrates, but not more than 30% of your total daily food consumption. Check your vit. D3 levels as low levels often increase blood sugar. As well, adrenal stress hormones also raise sugar levels. Stress control and regular exercise also help. Read more...
Lifestyle. Diet, exercise, and adherence to your doctor's recommendations and medication schedule. I suggest a support group since it's a tough disease to keep up with but it's extremely common even in your age group. Don't give up - long term. Read more...
Endocrinologist. Talk to your primary care doctor for possibly a referral to an endocrinologist. If blood sugar control is very difficult or sugar levels are unsteady, you may be a candidate for an Insulin pump. This will depend on a lot of factors. Your doctor may need to adjust your medications. Read more...