This serious complication of diabetes is marked by swelling of the retina and progressive leakage or withering of tiny retinal blood vessels. If there is enough blood vessel damage, abnormal vessels may grow from the retina into the vitreous fluid. Sudden vision loss may occur if these abnormal vessels rupture and bleed into the eye. Retinal tears and detachment may also occur.
Immediate medical care is needed if you experience blurred vision, vision loss, sudden appearance of numerous floaters or specks in your vision, sudden flashes of light, or a dark spot in the center of your vision. Laser treatment or surgery to remove the vitreous fluid, which the body eventually replaces with a clear fluid, may be necessary. Careful management of diabetes to control blood sugar levels can delay the onset and slow the progression of retinopathy in the long term.