Over the last 30 years, obesity all over the world has markedly increased. Coinciding with this steep rise in obesity has been an alarming rise in the number of people being diagnosed with diabetes, especially diabetes mellitus type 2 (DM2). In the past, older people, such as those over 50 years of age, were the ones mainly at risk for diabetes. However, Zietchick Research Institute is greatly concerned that diabetes is now occurring in great numbers in young people. More and more teenage and young adults are being diagnosed with DM2. In fact, over a quarter million women in the United States, between the ages of 20-44, are now being diagnosed with diabetes each year
Dr. Movsas, Director of Zietchick Research Institute, explains that many of these young women with DM2 will develop diabetic complications diabetic eye disease during their child-bearing years. Diabetic eye disease not only markedly reduces quality of life for the patient but may also cause a financial burden for the patient’s family and the health care system as a whole. It is worrisome that over half of women with diabetic retinopathy before pregnancy will experience exacerbation of their eye disease during pregnancy. Therefore, it is important that pregnant diabetic women receive eye exams during pregnancy to maintain eye health.
Zietchick Research Institute advises women with DM2 to visit their eye doctors during the first trimester so that their doctor can determine how closely they must be monitored during pregnancy. If your eye doctor is concerned about eye disease progression, he or she may recommend that you receive monthly examinations. Your eye doctor will decide whether any treatment during pregnancy for the eye disease is necessary. If the diabetic retinopathy has no or mild progression, then no treatment during pregnancy may be needed. For women who first develop diabetes during pregnancy (called gestational diabetes), there is a low risk of developing diabetic eye disease during pregnancy.
Zietchick Research Institute is a small company aimed to optimize eye health outcomes for both mothers and children. The researchers at Zietchick are working on developing an eyedrop treatment to prevent the progression of diabetic retinopathy in pregnant women.
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