Type 2 diabetes is a public health problem, the numbers of which are expected to continue increasing. Public health services need to know more about what services will be necessary as the epidemic progresses. Investigators at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney, Australia, have developed a way to calculate the rate of development of diabetic retinopathy per year, and to learn how the HbA1c levels were controlled since the disease was first diagnosed. By dividing the amount of retinopathy development by the number of years since Type 2 diabetes was diagnosed, scientists were able to calculate the degree of damage per year. Turning things around the scientists were able to find the level of HbA1c level control throughout the history of all the Type 2 diabetic participants.

The work of the scientists was reported on in January of 2017 in the Journal of Diabetes Compllications, and included 9281 participants who had been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Ophthalmologists will be able to predict the future development of retinopathy by the rate at which it has been progressing. Health care organizations knowing earlier rates of HbA1c control will know how many and what type of complications to plan for.

The back of the eye, or retina, is the only part of the living body in which treaties can be observed. Blue lines which can be seen under the skin are veins. When retinal arteries are damaged by high blood sugar levels, it can be summarized the rest of the arteries in the body are damaged as well.

Retinopathy takes place from damaged boxes in the retina: it is a severe eye complication where, due to the enlargement, breakage, or leaking of blood vessels in the eye, blood spills into the eyeball and vision is threatened. By gauging the rate at which retinopathy has been progressing health care organizations should be able to learn the speed of all arterial damage and calculate when to expect other complications in the population. Knowing how well blood sugar levels have been controlled in the past will help to project the burden of Type 2 diabetes in the future.

In 2010 there were an estimated 285 million cases of Type 2 diabetes worldwide. Over a third of the participants had some signs of diabetic retinopathy, and of those, a third were severely enough afflicted to be in danger of losing their eyesight. Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness in working-aged adults. Retinopathy is one among many reasons for Type 2 diabetics to maintain HbA1c levels below 7.0 per cent. It is also wise for Type 2 diabetics to consult their eye doctors every year to two years, as recommended by the health care provider who cares for their diabetes.