Diabetic Eye Examination

Eye Care & Optometrist in the Grand Rapids, MI Area

Diabetic Eye Examination

Diabetic Eye Examination services offered in the Grand Rapids, MI area

If you have diabetes, seeing an eye care specialist regularly is the best way to have perfect vision and reduce the risk of diabetic eye diseases. At W. Optical, with three locations in the area of Grand Rapids, Michigan, the skilled eye care professionals offer comprehensive diabetic eye examinations to detect or rule out potential problems. Call the office to schedule an eye exam or book an appointment online today.

What is a diabetic eye examination?

Diabetic eye exams are comprehensive eye evaluations in which your W. Optical provider looks for signs of eye problems related to diabetes, such as diabetic retinopathy and other complications. Diabetes increases your risk of vision and eye health issues because untreated diabetes damages the tiny blood vessels in the back part of your eye (retina).

You may not know you have a problem until severe complications develop, which is why routine diabetic eye examinations are important.

How often should I schedule diabetic eye examinations?

As a rule, you should attend diabetic eye exams at W. Optical at least every year or as instructed by your eye doctor. If you have a diabetes-related eye disease, you might need more frequent visits. See your W. Optical provider at the first sign of eye pain or new or worsening vision changes.

What should I expect during diabetic eye examinations?

During a diabetic eye exam, your provider often completes the following steps:

Medical history review/vital signs check

Your eye doctors review your medical and eye health history by asking you a series of questions. They also inquire about your symptoms, check your eye pressures, and may evaluate other vital signs.

Vision testing

During vision testing, you read letters and numbers off an eye chart. You also look through various lenses during refraction testing to further evaluate your vision. This allows your eye care specialist to determine the most appropriate vision prescription. 

Dilated eye exam

Your W. Optical provider gives you eye drops to widen your pupils, allowing your doctor to better see the back of your eyes. They use a magnifying glass and special light to examine areas of your eyes potentially affected by diabetes, including your optic nerve, blood vessels in the eyes, and the back of the eyes.

Your provider offers additional diagnostic tests to detect high eye pressure or other signs of an eye disease.

Eye imaging

You might also need retinal imaging, a procedure in which your specialist takes pictures of your eyes and lets you know if you need further diagnostic testing or treatment.

What happens after a diabetic eye examination?

If you’ve had your eyes dilated, you can expect your upclose vision to be blurry for about four hours. While dilation should not affect your distance vision, some patients prefer to have someone drive them home after a diabetic examination.

Your eye doctor lets you know the next best steps. They may suggest no treatment, watchful waiting, medications, eye drops, dietary supplements, contact lenses, glasses, or medical procedures.

Attending routine diabetic eye examinations is the best way to detect and treat diabetic eye diseases before they cause permanent eye damage or vision loss.

To schedule your next diabetic eye examination, call the W. Optical office or book an appointment online today.