Diabetic retinopathy, also known as diabetic eye disease, is when damage occurs to the retina due to diabetes. It can eventually lead to blindness.
It affects up to 80 percent of people who have had diabetes for 20 years or more. At least 90% of new cases could be reduced if there were proper treatment and monitoring of the eyes. The longer a person has diabetes, the higher his or her chances of developing diabetic retinopathy. Each year in the United States, diabetic retinopathy accounts for 12% of all new cases of blindness. It is also the leading cause of blindness for people aged 20 to 64 years