Wednesday, May 22, 2024 | 18:28 WIB

Blood sugar control avoids DME complications – and blindness


Jakarta, IO – Diabetes is the world’s biggest health problem – not only in terms of prevalence: it is a multi-organ disorder that may attack any part from head to feet, and it has huge potential of causing complications in both small and large blood vessels. According to the 2018 Indonesian Baseline Health Study, the prevalence of diabetes in our country is 1,017,290 sufferers, 55% of whom living in urban areas. The World Health Organization (WHO) declares that Indonesia is the 5th most diabetic country in the world, estimating that diabetes mellitus (“DM”) sufferers in our country will increase to 21.3 million people by 2030 and 28.6 million people by 2045. 

“Complications in small blood vessels carry the risk of diabetic retinopathy (DR), which is the primary cause of blindness in the working age population. DR is a chronic, progressive obstruction in the retinal micro blood vessels that damage sight. It is correlated to protracted hyperglycemia, hypertension, and other DM-related conditions. The result of blood screenings performed in Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital, Jakarta, from November 2010 to October 2011 on 2,302 diabetics, show that the prevalence of DR among 1,537 women respondents with a median age of 58 years old (from an age range of 13-92 years old), is 24.5%,” reported Dr. dr. Gitalisa Andayani Adriono, Sp.M(K), eye specialist and consultant from the University of Indonesia-Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital Faculty of Medicine’s Department of Ocular Health, in the “Beware the Risk of Blindness among Diabetic Macular Edema Patients” webinar held on Tuesday (11/10/2022). 

“1 of 3 diabetics will suffer from DR because the high level of their blood sugar damages the blood vessels in the back of the eyes that supply blood to the retina. It causes retinal blood vessels to become weak and leak out easily, which in turn causes the retina to thicken and swell up,” Dr. Gitalisa said. 


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