Diabetic retinopathy screening (DRS) is a test to check if the small blood vessels in the retina (back of the eye) have leaked or become blocked. Due to the increasing prevalence of diabetes mellitus, demand for diabetic retinopathy (DR) screening platforms is steeply increasing. Early detection and treatment of DR are key public health interventions that can greatly reduce the likelihood of vision loss. Current DR screening programs typically employ retinal fundus photography, which relies on skilled readers for manual DR assessment. However, this is labor-intensive and suffers from inconsistency across sites. Hence, there has been a recent proliferation of automated retinal image analysis software that may potentially alleviate this burden cost-effectively. Furthermore, current screening programs based on 2-dimensional fundus photography do not effectively screen for diabetic macular edema (DME). Optical coherence tomography is becoming increasingly recognized as the reference standard for DME assessment and can potentially provide a cost-effective solution for improving DME detection in large-scale DR screening programs. Current screening techniques are also unable to image the peripheral retina and require pharmacological pupil dilation; ultra-widefield imaging and confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy, which address these drawbacks, possess great potential.
Diabetic Retinopathy is an eye condition that occurs when high blood sugar levels damage the cells in the retina. If left untreated, diabetic retinopathy can cause blindness or serious damage to your eyesight. Diabetes can cause changes in the blood vessels of the retina, like swelling and leakage or the creation of new blood vessels. Blindness can result without early detection.
Age-related Macular Degeneration
Macular degeneration is usually signified by leaking of fluid or bleeding in the back of the eye. This causes central vision loss.
A dark spot at the back of the eye may signal a melanoma, which can grow unnoticed within the retina. If caught early, melanomas can be treated before they cause serious damage and travel to other areas of the body through the bloodstream.
Pressure against the optic nerve and compression of the eye’s blood vessels may indicate glaucoma. This disease causes permanent and irreversible vision loss.
Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)
Signs of high blood pressure often appear first in the eye. Indicators can include narrowing of the blood vessels, spots on the retina, or bleeding in the back of the eye.
Retinas can lift or pull away from the wall of the eye. If not properly treated, this can cause permanent vision loss.
The test usually takes 10 minutes, but can take up to 30 minutes if eye drops are used.
There are no symptoms in the early stages of diabetic retinopathy so you may not realise that you have it.
If you have diabetes, there are a number of risk factors for developing diabetic retinopathy, including:
Don’t wait to become prey of blindness. Get your screening today. DRS can reduce your risk of developing diabetic retinopathy by finding the condition before you notice any changes to your sight. When the condition is caught early, treatment is effective at reducing or preventing damage to your sight. If left untreated, diabetic retinopathy is the most common cause of sight loss in people of working age.