Diabetic eye problems increase in people with poorly controlled diabetes. Poorly controlled diabetes exacerbates damage to the blood vessels, nerves, and the immunity of a person. Reduced immunity is a primary cause for people with diabetes to have conjunctivitis and other eye infections.
Diabetes and eyes – Diagnosis of conjunctivitis
Conjunctivitis or pink eye can be caused due to allergies, bacterial or viral infections, and due to trauma to the eyes. In people with diabetes, poor diabetes control makes them susceptible to many infectious diseases due to compromised immunity, poor blood circulation, and nerve damage.
The presence of conjunctivitis is determined by physical examination, presence of symptoms, and the examination of the eye. Though there is presence of symptoms, it becomes difficult for doctors to determine the presence of conjunctivitis in some cases. That is why there is need for certain lab tests.
Lab test includes a culture test of the liquid discharge that comes out of the eyes. Generally, if the doctor advises lab test, he/she would ask you to take a sample of the discharge that comes out of the eyes. This liquid is sent to the laboratory for a culture test where the nature of the conjunctivitis is determined.
Diabetes and eyes – Pinguecula diagnosis
Among the host of diabetic eye problems that affect people with diabetes, Pinguecula is a common conjunctival problem among people with diabetes who live in sunny and hot climates, and have more exposure to UV radiation.
Pinguecula is also more common in elderly people with diabetes, males, and those who wear contact lenses.
Diagnosis of Pinguecula is generally done by a physical examination of the affected eye, and differential diagnosis. Pinguecula that does not extend to the cornea are generally considered for differential diagnosis. This is to eliminate the presence of squamous cell carcinoma of the conjunctiva.
Tests for differential diagnosis of Pinguecula
- Slit-lamp examination (biomicroscopy)
- Corneal topography