Spotting symptoms of diabetic macular edema
By the time you notice symptoms, diabetic macular edema could already be causing permanent damage. Regular eye exams are key.
Diabetic macular edema is a serious complication of diabetes in which damaged blood vessels at the back of your eye (retina) leak fluid. This fluid can cause swelling (edema) in the part of your retina that's responsible for sharp central vision (macula).
Most people with diabetic macular edema have mild or no symptoms. However, if left untreated, this condition can lead to vision loss. Symptoms of macular edema and diabetic retinopathy include:
- Blurred vision
- Floating spots in your vision (floaters)
- Decreased vision
All symptoms are serious
By the time you notice symptoms, diabetic macular edema could already be causing permanent damage to your macula. The macula is the part of your eye that allows you to see details, recognize faces and read words on a page, so any injury to it could cause severe vision impairment.
Call your doctor right away if you notice any symptoms. He or she can assess the seriousness of the condition and determine if diabetic macular edema already exists.
March 02, 2018
See more In-depth
- Facts about diabetic eye disease. National Eye Institute. https://www.nei.nih.gov/health/diabetic/retinopathy. Accessed Jan. 30, 2018.
- Eye complications. American Diabetes Association. http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/eye-complications/. Accessed Jan. 30, 2018.
- Fraser CE, et al. Diabetic retinopathy: Prevention and treatment. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed Jan. 30, 2018.
- What is a comprehensive dilated eye exam? National Eye Institute. https://www.nei.nih.gov/healthyeyes/eyeexam. Accessed Jan. 30, 2018.
- Fraser CE, et al. Diabetic retinopathy: Classification and clinical features. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed Feb. 6, 2018.
- Standards of medical care in diabetes — 2018. Diabetes Care. 2018:41:S105.