The US will experience a significant increase in the incidence of eye diseases caused by or related to diabetes, a new report has forecast.
Researchers at the Centres for Disease Control and Protection used census data and other studies to predict that by 2050, the number of retinopathy cases will rise from 5.5 million to 16 million.
It said diabetic retinopathy is the biggest cause of blindness in working-age Americans. This condition causes damage to the retina"s small blood vessels.
"Efforts to prevent diabetes and to optimally manage diabetes and its complications are needed," said the research team.
The report also predicted that related diseases such as glaucoma and cataracts would rise in number, with the latter set to rise by 235 per cent in people aged 40 or older.
A cataract is the name for a condition when the lens of an eye becomes clouded. It can cause blurred vision and some sensitivity to light, but there are procedures to treat this condition.
by Adrian Galbreth