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Diabetes 'top cause of adult blindness'

Diabetes 'top cause of adult blindness'
2nd November 2007

People are underestimating the risk diabetes poses to eyesight, according to a new US survey.

The study by the American Optometric Association (AOA) found that though three in five adults know that diabetes is detectable through a comprehensive eye exam, just one third of people with no history of eye problems have been to see an optometrist in the last year.

Diabetes is the primary cause of new cases of blindness among adults.

Dr Jorge Cuadros, AOA's Diabetes Eye Care Expert and University of California School of Optometry professor, said: "It is especially important for individuals who are at high risk for diabetes to visit an eye doctor regularly for dilated eye exams."

Early detection is vital in avoiding diabetic retinopathy. Other influences on susceptibility include controlling blood sugar control and blood pressure levels, the length of time with diabetes, race and family history.

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