Diseases & Conditions


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Retinopathy, Diabetic


Synonyms of Retinopathy, Diabetic
  • Insulin-Dependent Diabetes Retinopathy
  • Non-Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus Retinopathy

Disorder Subdivisions



    General Discussion
    Diabetic Retinopathy is a complication of diabetes and a disorder of the light sensitive tissue of the eye (the retina). This condition is characterized by destructive changes in the blood vessels of the retina, which, if left unchecked, may lead to visual impairment or blindness. The severity of the damage to the retina is highly correlated with the length of time the patient has had diabetes.

    For reasons that are not well understood, the blood vessels of the retina lack their normal oxygen load. Capillaries tend to close off, further depleting the oxygen supply. The diabetes process also weakens the walls of these blood vessels, which tend to become enlarged and form micro-aneurysms. Not infrequently, the small blood vessels break causing hemorrhage and contributing to the patient?s clouded vision.

    Organizations related to Retinopathy, Diabetic
    • American Diabetes Association
      National Call Center
      Alexandria VA 22311
      Phone #: 703-549-1500
      800 #: 800-342-2383
      e-mail: askADA@diabetes.org
      Home page: http://www.diabetes.org
    • American Foundation for the Blind
      11 Penn Plaza
      New York NY 10001
      Phone #: 212-502-7600
      800 #: 800-232-5463
      e-mail: afbinfo@afb.org
      Home page: http://www.afb.org
    • Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International
      120 Wall St. 19th Fl
      New York NY 10005-4001
      Phone #: 212-785-9500
      800 #: 800-533-2873
      e-mail: info@jdrf@org
      Home page: http://www.jdrf.org
    • NIH/National Eye Institute
      Building 31 Rm 6A32
      Bethesda MD 20892-2510
      Phone #: 301-496-5248
      800 #: --
      e-mail: 2020@nei.nih.gov
      Home page: http://www.nei.nih.gov/
    • National Association for Visually Handicapped
      22 West 21st Street
      New York NY 10010
      Phone #: 212-889-3141
      800 #: --
      e-mail: staff@navh.org
      Home page: http://www.navh.org
    • ROPARD:The Association for Retinopathy of Prematurity and Related Diseases
      P.O.Box 250425
      Franklin MI 48025
      Phone #: 248-549-2671
      800 #: 800-788-2020
      e-mail: ropard@yahoo.com
      Home page: http://www.ropard.org



    For a Complete Report

    This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc. ? (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be obtained for a small fee by visiting the NORD website. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational treatments (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, see http://www.rarediseases.org/search/rdblist.html