If you’ve been waiting in anticipation….wait no more. New guidance on diabetic retinopathy is here.

It’s been 15 years since the American Diabetic Association (ADA) last issued guidance on the diagnosis and treatment of diabetic retinopathy.  Last week, the ADA published a new position statement. Here is the rundown.
First, why do we need new guidance?
Because diagnostic assessment and treatment options have improved dramatically since their last position statement in 2002 (i.e. wide spread use of OCT’s, anti-VEGF developments).

What are the screening recommendations?
–Adults with type 1 diabetes should have a dilated exam within 5 years after the onset of diabetes.
–Patients with type 2 diabetes should have an initial dilated exam at the time of the diabetes diagnosis.  If there is no evidence of retinopathy for one or more annual eye exams, then exams every 2 years may be considered.

What about gestational diabetes?
Women who develop gestational diabetes mellitus do not require an eye examination during pregnancy and do not appear to be at increased risk of developing diabetic retinopathy during pregnancy.

What do they say about teleretina?
“While retinal photography may serve as a screening tool for retinopathy, it is not a substitute for a comprehensive eye exam.”
For more details on the screening recs and treatment guidelines, click here.

Jaclyn Garlich
Dr. Garlich graduated from the New England College of Optometry in 2010 and completed a residency in primary care and ocular disease at the St. Louis VA. In 2013, she developed an optometry clinical reference mobile app available in the iTunes store. In 2016, she founded 20/20 Glance, a weekly optometry newsletter that gives a rundown on clinically relevant optometry news in an easy to digest format.

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