SOLE, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SOLE, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Retina damage from diabetes. Fluorescence angiogram of the inside of an eye showing the early stages of diabetic retinopathy, where damage to the retina has been caused by diabetes. The image was made by injecting a fluorescent dye into the blood stream, then photographing the retina under an ultraviolet light source. Changes to the retinal blood vessels (white) mean that they leak, causing small haemorrhages (white dots). Circulatory problems lead to the tissue lacking oxygen, and new vessels develop to try to counteract this. However, these new vessels often haemorrhage themselves. This may lead to floating objects in the visual field, blurred vision, detachment of the retina and glaucoma. Blindness can develop if this is left untreated. Bleeding can be treated by laser photocoagulation, and blood sugar level maintenance can slow the disease's progress.
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