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New Treatment Approaches For Diabetic Retinopathy

Diabetic Retinopathy Diabetic retinopathy is a common, progressive disease of the eye often occurring later in life. It is common among patients with diabetes. For more information and an overview of diabetic retinopathy, check out our article: Diabetic Retinopathy - What It Is And How To Treat It

Diabetic retinopathy is a disease that is best treated during its earliest stages. The earlier an eye doctor diagnoses and detects it, the more likely one is to suffer fewer side effects. Unfortunately, as with may eye diseases, diabetic retinopathy is complicated. While many patients experience few if any symptoms during the earliest stages of the disease, as the disease progresses serious complications including rupturing of the blood vessels in the eye can occur.

Eventually, without proper and prompt care, this can lead to blindness. This is one reason researchers continue to passionately pursue new treatments and possible cures for diabetic retinopathy.

New Research Leads To New Treatment
As with most diseases of the eye, researchers are constantly seeking new and improved treatment methods and choices. While a serious and progressive disease, diabetic retinopathy is one disease that researchers are finding promising treatments to offer patients.

Recent studies show there may be new ways to prevent and slow the progression of diabetic retinopathy. One study suggests ingestion of Omega-3 essential fatty acids early in life and throughout one's life can help prevent or slow the progression of diabetic retinopathy.

For centuries now, medical health researchers promoted essential fatty acids as a safe and natural supplement for healing and preventing many diseases. Essential fatty acids are well known for their ability for example, to reduce inflammation in the body. See also Fish Oil For Your Eyes

Other promising studies, including one recently released in the July issue of Countdown, a journal dedicated to juvenile diabetes research, suggests important discoveries are occurring daily on diabetic retinopathy, a disease often diagnosed in children with type 1 diabetes.

Understanding The Causes, Not Just Treating Disease
Key to research and new findings are researcher's abilities to understand the precise causes for diabetic retinopathy, so effective treatments and cures can be researched. Researchers are looking if not to cure the disease, then at the very least to slow its progression. By slowing the progression of diabetic retinopathy, patients diagnosed with this condition can enjoy a better quality of life, and experience a reduced risk for blindness as a complication of the disease.

One study revealed the use of a compound called ruboxistaurin might halt or slow down the progression of this disease. Ruboxistaurin works by prohibiting certain enzymes in the body from causing damage to the blood vessels in the eye. Diabetic retinopathy often results in damage to the blood vessels or leaking of the blood vessels in the eye, one reason it can lead to blindness in its advanced stages.

This new research may lead to an FDA approved drug in the near future that may help slow the progression, and possibly, prevent severe cases of retinopathy in patients diagnosed with this condition early in life.

Diabetic retinopathy is often considered among the most complicated and severe diseases of the eye, because, like severe macular degeneration, it can lead to partial or complete blindness. Every effort is being made to help patients slow the progression of this disease if possible.

People diagnosed with type I or type II diabetes can also help by following their doctor's treatment advice and keeping their blood sugar in check. The better a patient's overall health, the more likely they are to combat serious diseases like diabetic retinopathy successfully.

Millions of people suffer diabetes each year, and of those thousands develop serious complications including retinopathy. Hopefully, researchers will continue their efforts to discover new and effective treatments for this serious complication of the disease.

For more information on diabetic retinopathy, visit the following:

National Eye Institute
http://www.nei.nih.gov/health/diabetic/retinopathy.asp Overview of diabetic retinopathy, including its causes, risk factors for the disease, symptoms, treatment and more information on current research and clinical trials recruiting patients for the disease.

National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse
http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/complications_eyes/index.htm The NBIC provides more information on controlling diabetes and preventing severe complications from this disease including diabetic retinopathy.

National Institutes of Health - Senior Health
http://nihseniorhealth.gov/diabeticretinopathy/toc.html This site provides information for elderly patients diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy. NIH Senior provides information on causes, risk factors and links to important resources for seniors with this complication of diabetes.

NIH News - U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
http://www.nih.gov/news/pr/jun2005/niddk-12.htm NIH News provides a press release providing information on detecting diabetic retinopathy in pre-diabetic patients. The earlier you diagnose disease, the more likely you are to treat it successfully.

Remember, prevention is always important to a healthy life and a better quality of life. Do all you can to learn about your health, and the diseases you have, so you can make smart choices about treating your symptoms and working with your doctors successfully.

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