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From Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, USA:

My 9 year old son is having his eyes checked for the fourth time this year. If he does need glasses will they do him any good considering the effects high and low blood sugars have on the eyes?


There is no direct correlation at all between eyesight (and glasses as well!) and diabetic microvascular complication of the retina of the eyes. It is true that high blood sugar can temporary impair eyesight but it generally recovers shortly after normalisation of metabolic control. As far as the microvascular complications of the eye, i.e., diabetic retinopathy, it is generally secondary to a long period of insufficient metabolic control.


[Editor's comment: People with recently-diagnosed diabetes frequently complain that their vision deteriorates after getting started on therapy. This phenomenon is temporary, and I advise them to "tough it out" if possible, or buy very cheap magnifying glasses if needed, as the vision will improve as the blood sugar stabilizes at a lower level. As pointed out by Dr. Songini, these changes in vision due to changes in the lens (what the eye docs call "changes in refraction") are completely separate from the problem of diabetic retinopathy. WWQ]

Original posting 20 Dec 97


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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:56
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