SUE FORD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SUE FORD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Retina damage from diabetes. Ophthalmoscope image of diabetic retinopathy, where damage to the retina has been caused by diabetes. Red blood vessels are seen emerging from the optic disc (right). This type of diabetic retinopathy, called diabetic maculopathy, is seen as dark and yellow patches over the macula (centre). These patches are exudates (fatty substances) that have leaked from blood vessels damaged by diabetes. The macula is crucial for visual acuity (sharpness), meaning that once exudates cover the macula, they can cause irreversible vision loss. The disease's progress can be slowed through regulating blood sugar levels.
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