One of the most common causes of blindness in American adults, diabetic retinopathy results from the body's inability to properly store and use sugar. An increase in blood sugar levels causes damage to the blood vessels in the retina. Blood vessels behind the eyes contract, restricting circulation. Lack of proper blood flow robs the eyes of sufficient nutrients and oxygen, and blood vessels become weak. Diabetic retinopathy behaves much like wet AMD. Neovascularization may be present with possible leaking, and there may be swelling in areas of the retina.
We believe that the acupuncture treatments used at the Arkansas Acupuncture Center help vision in cases of diabetic retinopathy by normalizing the flow of blood to the eyes. Damage to the blood vessels and retina resulting from the compromised blood circulation can heal. As with many retinal and optic nerve disorders, when the eyes are nourished with proper oxygen and nutrients, healing can occur.
The treatment regimen is similar to that used for AMD patients with variations depending on the degree of vision loss the patient has at the onset of treatment