Diabetics getting fewer eye problems, but experts still worried.

A recent study released by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) shows a decline in diabetics reporting vision problems. Researchers found a drop from 26 percent in 1997 to 18.6 percent in the number of diabetics reporting vision problems.

Better blood glucose control, blood pressure control and cholesterol management seem to be the factors contributing to the decreased incidence in vision problems among diabetics.

While the report is encouraging, researchers caution it may lead to a false sense of reassurance. The percentage of diabetic patients with impaired vision might increase substantially after newly diagnosed diabetics have lived with their condition for five or ten years. Researchers point out that one deficiency in the study is that the data was self-reported so the seriousness of the vision problems are unclear.

The study which was published in the November 18, 2011 issue of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report evaluated data from the 1997-2010 National Health Interview Survey. This survey of diabetics asked if they had any trouble with their vision and if they had seen an eye care professional in the last year.

In the United States, diabetes is the leading cause of blindness and the best way for diabetics to lessen their risk of vision problems is to regulate their blood sugar and see their eye doctor once a year.*

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