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Can Blood Pressure Drugs Treat Diabetes Retinopathy

Diabetic Retinopathy is the main cause for vision loss in diabetic people. It happens when diabetes damages retina of the eye. Retina is a light sensitive tissue which plays a vital role in producing clear vision. According to National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, it causes blindness in most of the adults in United States. This report cannot be surprising any more, with an ever-rising increase in fresh cases of Obesity and Diabetes in the country. 80 percent people suffering from diabetes for 10 years or more, get affected with Diabetic Retinopathy. There is no cure for this condition. However, in 90 percent cases, the vision can be saved from vigilant monitoring of the blood sugar level and undergoing timely treatment using laser or surgery.

Knowledge Gained From Latest Research on Diabetes Retinopathy:

  • A latest research was carried out recently (Feb.25th,2010) by scientists from Massachusetts.
  • They have found out that certain high blood pressure medicines can now prevent Diabetic Retinopathy.
  • Earlier studies only suggested that blood pressure drugs might be helpful in treating this complication of diabetes.
  • But the present study has discovered evidences to support the validity of the previous findings.
  • Proteins are chemical substances made available to the body through the food we eat.
  • The study was carried out on these proteins which provide nourishment to the retina.
  • Comparison was made of the proteins found in the retina of diabetic experimental mice with healthy mice in laboratory.
  • 1,700 proteins were studied as part of this research, making it the largest one on this topic.
  • It was learnt from the research that the diabetic mice had nearly 65 types of abnormal protein in their retina.
  • Blood pressure drugs were found to reduce these abnormal changes in the proteins.
  • In particular, the ARB (Angiotensin II receptor blocker) medicine, Candesartan, was found to prevent these changes up to 70 percent.

Symptoms of Diabetic Retinopathy: High glucose levels in the blood damages small tissues in the body. There are several such small tissues in the eye. When these tissues start getting damaged, there are no initial warning signs of Diabetic Retinopathy. In the long run, some symptoms of this condition are:

  • Rings, flashing lights or blank spots
  • Blurry or double vision
  • Pain or pressure in one or both of the eyes
  • Dark or floating spots
  • Trouble seeing things from the corners of the eyes

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