Diabetes is one of the most prevalent diseases in the United States today. We’re excited to share the news of a discovery that may lead to improved treatments for diabetic eye disease! Currently, treatments are only effective in approximately 40% of all cases.
As Boca Raton’s trusted vision center, we are actively looking for better ways to serve our patients, including those with diabetes. Better treatments bring us closer to the potential for disease prevention, and in turn, a healthier you.
Shocking Stats about Diabetic Eye Disease
Diabetic retinopathy is the most common form of diabetic eye disease, and it’s an increasing threat to diabetics over 40. In 2010, there were approximately 7.7 million cases of diabetic retinopathy in the United States alone. In 2050, it is projected that the number will double to 14.6 million cases.
This disease occurs when the lack of glucose control in diabetic patients causes leakage of the blood vessels at the back of the eyes. This then destroys the eye’s light receptors and eventually leads to blindness.
Why Improved Treatment for Diabetic Retinopathy is Necessary
While diabetic retinopathy doesn’t result from all cases of diabetes, it’s still cause for concern for several million Americans. The statistic from earlier is a dreadfully low rate of effectiveness – especially when you are balancing the weight of diabetes-related blindness in favor of the 60%. With how many millions of Americans are diagnosed with diabetes or pre-diabetes every year, the percentage who go blind climbs ever higher.
Diabetic Vision Loss Discovery
In summary, researchers discovered a protein called ARF6. This protein’s job is to control VEGFs, another protein directly involved in the development of diabetic retinopathy. Current treatments include anti-VEGFs in order to prevent inflammation in the eye. The reason only 40% of treatments work may be linked to the role of ARF6 in controlling the VEGF proteins. You can read more about the discovery here.
Better Treatment for Diabetic Retinopathy & Other Conditions From Our Eye Doctor in Boca Raton Is Just a Phone Call Away
If researchers can find a way to control newly discovered ARF6 proteins, and prevent them from spurring on inflammatory signals that result in diabetic retinopathy, we may even be able to prevent other similar conditions including cancer.
Your reliable eye doctor in Boca Raton, Dr. Erin Weston stays up to date on all the latest medical news in the field of optometry. Count on us to provide the latest in diabetic eye disease treatments, as well as comprehensive eye exams to help catch eye disease as soon as possible. We’re just one phone call away, please call (561) 912-3211 for an appointment today!