Diabetes Week 2015

Diabetes Week 2015, which runs from 14-21 June, is an annual campaign to help raise awareness and promote fundraising events across the UK.

Diabetes is a chronic metabolic disorder characterised by absent or insufficient insulin production or insensitivity to insulin, which leads to too much sugar (glucose) in the blood. This can result in damage to the organs, nerves and blood vessels. There are 3.2 million people in the UK who have been diagnosed with diabetes (2013)1, however it is estimated that there are 630,00 who are as yet undiagnosed2. The earlier that diabetes is diagnosed the better the long term prognosis is for the patient. Therefore, it is important to recognise the early signs such as increased thirst, increased urination, fatigue, weight loss and slow healing of cuts and wounds and to see your GP about them.

Patients with diabetes are more likely to develop eye problems such as cataracts or glaucoma, but the principal threat to vision is through diabetic retinopathy which is damage to the retina from leaking blood vessels.
Here are a few symptoms of diabetic-related eye conditions to look out for:

  • Blurred vision
  • Reduced colour vision
  • Black or empty areas in your vision
  • Fluctuating vision

If you have noticed any of the above symptoms or are concerned about your vision, book an appointment to see your optician as soon as possible or book a consultation with one of our Consultant Ophthalmic Surgeons.

Find out more about diabetic-related eye conditions and the treatments available at Optegra.

1. Quality and outcomes framework (QOF) 2012/3
England http://www.hscic.gov.uk/article/2021/Websitesearch?q=quality+and+outcomes+framework&go=Go&area=both
Wales http://wales.gov.uk/topics/statistics/headlines/health2013/general-medical-servicescontract-quality-outcomes-framework-2012-13/?lang=en
Scotland http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/General-Practice/Quality-And-OutcomesFramework
Northern Ireland http://www.dhsspsni.gov.uk/index/stats_research/stats-resource/stats-gpallocation/gp_contract_qof.htm

2. This figure was worked out using the diagnosed figure from the 2012/3 Quality and Outcomes Framework and the AHPO diabetes prevalence model. A figure for Northern Ireland was not predicted by the AHPO model, so undiagnosed prevalence for Northern Ireland was extrapolated on the % undiagnosed figure for Scotland.

Country  Prevalence Number of people  Total   Prev Undiag
England   6.0%  2,703,044  3,211,368  7.4%  508,324
NI   5.3%  79,072  94,767  6.4%  15,695
Scotland   5.2%  252,599  302,742  6.9%  50,143
Wales   6.7%  173,299  232,766    9.4%  59,467 
Total   6.0%  3,208,014  3,841,643  7.5%  633,629

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