Back to Ask the Diabetes Team Ask the Diabetes Team

From Indianapolis, Indiana, USA:

My nephew has type 1 diabetes. If someone with diabetes has an eye exam, and is found to have hemorrhages and exudates but no proliferative retinopathy (neovascularization), does it mean this is background retinopathy? Is the treatment only tight glucose control and not laser? When does a person with type 1 diabetes need to have a laser procedure?


You are correct, if there are no proliferative changes, it is considered background retinopathy, and laser treatment is generally not indicated for this stage of retinopathy. Laser treatment is indicated when the retina shows proliferative changes or if eminent proliferative changes appear likely, and the patient is poorly compliant with keeping appointments. Laser is also indicated when there is macular edema that is as close as 0.5 mm from central vision as well as other circumstance dealing with the amount of edema and proximity to central vision regardless if retinopathy is proliferative or not.

The rules for laser intervention are the same for type 1 and type 2 diabetes.


[Editor's comment: See Retinopathy. SS]

Original posting 19 Aug 2003
Posted to Complications


  Back to Ask the Diabetes Team Return to the Top of This Page

Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:48
This Internet site provides information of a general nature and is designed for educational purposes only. If you have any concerns about your own health or the health of your child, you should always consult with a physician or other health care professional.

This site is published by T-1 Today, Inc. (d/b/a Children with Diabetes), a 501c3 not-for-profit organization, which is responsible for its contents. Our mission is to provide education and support to families living with type 1 diabetes.
By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use, Legal Notice, and Privacy Policy.
© Children with Diabetes, Inc. 1995-2018. Comments and Feedback.