Preserve Your Vision With Crown Vision Center - Mackenzie

Diabetic Retinopathy in St. Louis

Preserve Your Vision With Crown Vision Center - Mackenzie

(314) 352-5367

Have diabetes?

Experiencing changes in vision, such as blurriness and eye floaters?

Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is one of the leading causes of vision loss around the world. Of an estimated 285 million people with diabetes mellitus worldwide, approximately one-third have signs of diabetic retinopathy.

Fortunately, there are several steps people with diabetes can take to prevent or minimize vision loss.

Blood sugar level check


What Is Diabetic Retinopathy?

noraml eye and an eye with  diabetic retinopathy

Diabetic retinopathy is an eye disease caused by high blood sugar levels that damage the small blood vessels clustered within your retina. This leads to swelling or fluid leakage and can result in vision loss and even blindness.

Diabetic retinopathy also raises the risk of retinal detachment and/or glaucoma.

Because the early stages of diabetic retinopathy show no symptoms, many don't realize they have it until the disease has progressed.

If you have diabetes, you are at risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. To reduce your risk and protect your vision, schedule an eye exam with Crown Vision Center - Mackenzie today.


What Are the Symptoms of Diabetic Retinopathy?

diabetic-retinopothy-oct-scan

As mentioned above, the early phase of diabetic retinopathy typically shows no symptoms. This is why it's important to have routine eye exams (all the more so if you have diabetes), as your eye doctor can detect diabetic retinopathy in its earlier stages before symptoms become apparent.

Symptoms of proliferative diabetic retinopathy include:
  • Blurred vision
  • Floaters
  • Double vision
  • Near vision problems
  • Seeing dark spots (scotomas)
  • Difficulty seeing at night

What are the Stages of Diabetic Retinopathy?

Non-Proliferative Retinopathy (early stage):
This occurs when small bulges–or microaneurysms–form in blood vessels and can leak fluid into the retina.

Proliferative Retinopathy (later phase):
This refers to abnormal vessel growth and leakage in the retina. This triggers a variety of vision problems such as blurriness, reduced field of vision, and even blindness.

If you have diabetes, Crown Vision Center - Mackenzie in St. Louis offers diagnostic tests and treatment options to help preserve your vision. The earlier the diagnosis, the better the treatment outcome.

Diabetic-Retinopathy-Bllod-sugar-level-checker


How Optometrists Diagnose Diabetic Retinopathy

  • Medical history

    Your optometrist will ask about your medical history, including diabetes, as well as your family history of eye conditions.

  • Dilated pupil exam

    Your optometrist will apply eye drops to dilate the pupils so they can see inside the eye and detect any issues.

  • Fluorescein angiography

    This eye test uses a special dye and camera to look at blood flow in the retina and choroid.

  • Optical coherence tomography

    This imaging method shows a cross-section of the retina and can indicate whether vessels are leaking fluid into the retina.


How to Treat Diabetic Retinopathy

senior man with diabetic retinopathy

Treatment begins with managing blood sugar levels and diabetes. This means eating a healthy diet, increasing physical activity, and taking whatever diabetes medication has been prescribed.

Other treatments will depend on the stage or severity of the disease. If caught early, only blood sugar management may be necessary.

However, if you're in a more advanced stage of the diseases, treatment options may include:
  • Eye medications. Steroid and Anti-VEGF treatments can stop inflammation and prevent the formation of new blood vessels.
  • Laser surgery. Reduces the proliferation of abnormal blood vessels and swelling in the retina.
  • Vitrectomy. If you have proliferative diabetic retinopathy, you may need an eye surgery called vitrectomy. This procedure removes scar tissue, blood or fluid, and some of the vitreous gel so light rays can better focus on the retina.

Diabetic Retinopathy FAQs

What are the major risk factors for diabetic retinopathy?

As the name suggests, diabetes is the main risk factor for developing diabetic retinopathy. Be mindful of your family history of type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, get an annual eye exam to detect potential problems early.

Other conditions such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol are also risk factors. Moreover, those of African or Hispanic descent have a higher risk of developing diabetic retinopathy.

Can diabetic retinopathy be prevented?

There are a number of ways to preserve your vision and reduce the risk of vision and eye damage due to diabetic retinopathy.

  • Visit your eye doctor for annual eye exams.
  • Control your blood sugar levels.
  • Maintain healthy cholesterol levels and blood pressure.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Quit smoking.

The best thing you can do right now is to schedule your eye exam with Crown Vision Center - Mackenzie in St. Louis to ensure that everything is in check.

Does diabetic retinopathy cause blindness?

Diabetic retinopathy is one of the main causes of blindness among work-aged adults. It affects one in three people with diabetes and often goes unnoticed at first. Diagnosing and treating the condition early on can prevent severe vision loss.

Patient Reviews
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223 Reviews
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- Jun. 30, 2024
Excellent.
- May. 29, 2024
The office was friendly and clean. They treated my eye health issue with care and empathy. I highly ... recommend this office and team. I can finally see out of my right eye after treatment and appreciate that these services are available.
- May. 13, 2024
This center has been so quick and so pleasant compared to anywhere I’ve been! I will definitely co... ntinue coming here!
- Apr. 10, 2024
Great Dr. and staff. I told them exactly what I needed and they were super helpful. I bought the fir... st pair they showed me 😁
- Feb. 19, 2024
Great service with friendly staff and quality products.
- Feb. 19, 2024
They went above and beyond to help me. I am vey thankful for their help and kindness!
- Jan. 26, 2024
Marsha and Lauren were so unbelievably helpful today! I've been a patient at this location for about... 5 years and hands down. This is the best service I've ever received! The optometrist is great, friendly, and quite approachable with questions and concerns. There is another lady whose brusque manner doesn't vibe with mine, and magically, she wasn't here today! I was able to get my exam, have a great selection of frames picked out for me, and be out the door in under 30 minutes. I can't wait to pick up my new frames! Thanks again Marsha and Lauren!
- Jan. 14, 2024
Very pleasant experience.
- Dec. 25, 2023
Dr. Alexa Kojima and her staff at Crown Vision were amazing from the moment we stepped into her busi... ness until we clarified our orders for our updated prescriptions. I had been searching for another OD since my previous one's company started over billing, incorrectly billing for covered procedures, and not being able to correct them with assistance from my insurance. It was frustrating to say the least. Dr. Kojima and Crown Vision has been a blessing. She acknowledged my distance vision improved and no longer required for driving...I stopped using my glasses due to fuzziness. The blurring vision was due to better eyesight and not decreased vision! Woohoo! My husband was checked for his cataract progress and was assured they were minor and would not require surgery any time in the near future...hereditary condition at a younger age runs in his family. He updated his readers and I updated my readers and contacts. No more dry eye and discomfort with wearing them! She listened to my concerns and found a brand version that allowed continuous moisture/breathing instead of having to use eye drops throughout the day. Thorough testing and knowledgeable staff makes Crown Vision and Dr. Alexa Karina our "go-to" OD from now onward!
- Dec. 08, 2023
Very helpful and didn't have to wait, took time to help with everything and explain everything to me... , awesome.
- Nov. 07, 2023
The service was smooth sailing. This is an organized business. They were professional and honest.
- Aug. 05, 2023
Staff were very friendly, supportive and helpful. Staff took time to answer questions and help me pi... ck out my first pair of glasses! Enjoyed my experience here and would recommend!
- Jul. 21, 2023
Outstanding experience! Everyone was very nice and wonderful to interact with. No upselling and pric... es are very reasonable. Thank you!
- Jun. 12, 2023
My first contact was with Sunny - and lives up to her name. What a ray of sunshine! Dr. Alexa was g... reat too. Best eyewear I've ever had. Love my glasses but most of all, love my Crown store! Sunny & Alexa are the Best!
- May. 06, 2023
The staff were very nice and helpful. They made sure I was happy with my glasses 🤓.
- Jan. 02, 2023
Everyone is so nice!
- Dec. 30, 2022
Everyone was so nice and welcoming. Dr. Kajima was kind and answered all of my questions. I wasn’t... pressured to buy glasses there either. I would recommend this place to anyone!
- Dec. 15, 2022
Been going here for a few years. Definitely recommend. Doctor is friendly and upbeat, staff is alway... s professional and friendly. Can't ask for more.
- Oct. 20, 2022
Staff was great. Extremely helpful and very friendly and informative. My glasses were ready for pick... up only 2 days after my exam. Definitely recommend!!!!!
- Aug. 06, 2022
Best getting glasses experience ever.

View All 223 Reviews

Diabetic Retinopathy Diagnosis & Treatment in St. Louis

Our optometry practice in St. Louis

Photograph of Alexa  Kojima
Hours
  • Monday 10:00 am - 7:00 pm
  • Tuesday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Wednesday 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Thursday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Friday 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Saturday 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
  • Sunday Closed
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  • Spectera
  • Medicaid
  • Anthem
  • Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Blue Cross
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blood sugaer level testing kit

Have diabetes?

Early detection and timely treatment can prevent vision loss.

(314) 352-5367