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Question:

From Nashville, Tennessee, USA:

I am 30 years old, and I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes eight years ago. I have worn glasses or contacts since I was a teenager. Lately, though, I am experiencing very blurry vision in my left eye only. My eye strain is causing me to have headaches. I haven't had a full eye exam in one year. However, I am scheduled to have one two days from today. Could my blurry vision be a result of my diabetes? How long does one usually have diabetes before any type of eye infection starts?

Answer:

Blurry vision in one eye could be a vision change unrelated to your diabetes, necessitating a prescription change in your glasses or contacts. You did not mention if you are currently wearing contacts, but a soiled contact lens or a lens on the wrong eye could cause unilateral blurriness and result in eyestrain.

Studies have shown that retinopathy may occur after five years duration and possibly sooner or much later, if at all, depending upon control. For patients with type 1 diabetes the standard of care is an eye exam by the fifth year, and yearly thereafter.

You did ask about infection, and, although I assumed you meant retinopathy, infection is a concern for a contact lens wearer and is always an increased risk when your blood sugar is elevated. Lastly, your blurry vision could be a result of your diabetes. Elevated blood sugar can cause blurry vision that is reversible, but leaking vessels in the retina can also cause blurry vision that may not be recovered and needs treatment to stop progression.

CAG

DTQ-20010214142801
Original posting 22 Feb 2001
Posted to Complications

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:18
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