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The #1 cause of vision loss in the United States

A new study published in this week's Journal of? the American Medical Association reveals that one in three people with diabetes has diabetic retinopathy. In addition, 4% of those diagnosed with the disease have such advanced diabetic retinopathy that they are in danger of losing their vision. The study was population-based and involved Americans with diabetes who were age 40 and older. 28.5 percent of those in the study had been diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy is the #1 cause of vision loss in people aged 20 to 74 in the United States. Study findings also showed that more men than women have the disease and that blacks and Hispanics have a higher rate of the disease than whites. The good news is that diabetics can prevent or slow diabetic retinopathy by controlling their blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol. It is crucial that once diagnosed with diabetes, the patient have a dilated eye exam soon after diagnosis and then have periodic dilated eye exams as recommended by the ophthalmologist or optometrist.* Andrea Schumann Staff Writer

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