Eye Damage Caused by Diabetes, High Cholesterol and an Overactive Thyroid

Eye Damage Caused by Diabetes, High Cholesterol and an Overactive Thyroid

Table of Contents

Mirjeta Abazaga of Upstate optometrist Mirjeta Abazaga emphasizes that eyes provide many health warning signs affecting the entire body, such as eye problems linked to diabetes, high cholesterol and an overactive thyroid.

Diabetes can alter the blood vessels of the retina of your eye, known as diabetic retinopathy. These changes could include leaky or abnormal new vessels growing on its surface which could eventually result in blurry vision.

High Blood Pressure

Blood pressure measures the force that your blood exerts against the walls of your blood vessels as your heart pumps blood out to push against arteries in your body and their walls. Pressure is necessary for blood to travel throughout your body, but excessively high amounts can damage the artery walls, leading to stiffening and narrowing, ultimately restricting flow to organs in your body. High blood pressure causes fat and calcium deposits to build up in your arteries, creating a build-up of plaque. Plaque can lead to weakness in an artery wall which could result in rupture, leading to burst aneurysms which can prove fatal. High blood pressure also damages blood vessels in your eyes resulting in hypertensive retinopathy – something your eye doctor will also likely diagnose as soon as symptoms appear.

Your retina is a thin layer of tissue at the back of your eye which transforms light into electrical signals for processing by your brain as images. High blood pressure can damage blood vessels that provide oxygen-rich blood for your retina by narrowing and swelling them, interfering with their flow to deliver sufficient amounts of blood flow; in severe cases this can cause your retina to swell up and even lead to blindness.

If you suffer from hypertension, it’s vitally important that it’s effectively managed. Your eye doctor can assist in this by offering dietary changes, exercise programs, weight loss solutions, salt reduction techniques, smoking cessation methods and stress relief techniques; along with possibly medication. Regular eye exams with an ophthalmologist may help detect early changes associated with increased blood pressure.

Hypertension can damage the delicate blood vessels in your eye, leading to conditions like central serous choroidopathy and hypertensive retinopathy, as well as increasing your risk of stroke, which could further impair vision. If you have hypertension, it’s essential that it be managed through medication, diet and exercise and seeking medical advice immediately if symptoms such as headache or vision changes appear.

High Cholesterol

Cholesterol may have earned its bad rep due to its association with heart disease, but high cholesterol levels in your blood can also cause eye damage. According to independent optician Care Optics, elevated levels of cholesterol can contribute to age-related macular degeneration (AMD), an age-related eye condition which impairs central vision making it hard for you to read or recognize faces. According to NHS definition, AMD doesn’t lead to total blindness but can make everyday tasks such as driving and reading very challenging.

Cholesterol deposits can build up in eye-blood vessels and form clots that block retinal vein occlusion, creating a yellow or blue ring around the cornea that can be detected by your doctor, particularly among people under 40. High cholesterol can also lead to build-ups of lipids in brain-connected arteries which could trigger stroke.

Thyroid Disease

Your thyroid gland regulates your metabolism, impacting virtually every part of your body. If it malfunctions improperly, this could result in serious health complications like cardiovascular or eye diseases.

One symptom of thyroid disease is hyperthyroidism, or overactive thyroid. This condition often results in bulging eyes. Most commonly affected are women aged 20-40; men may also suffer. Graves’ Disease may play a part in this, in which immune systems mistakenly attack the thyroid; other possible sources include taking too much thyroid hormone or having lumps called “hot nodules” produce too much thyroid hormone, among other possibilities.

Hyperthyroidism may also result in dry eyes. Furthermore, untreated hyperthyroidism can lead to the swelling of glands causing them to protrude out from the neck area and bulge forward. If this occurs it’s important to notify a healthcare provider as untreated hyperthyroidism can result in irregular heartbeats, blood clots and even stroke.

Another symptom of thyroid disease is a white, painless ring around the cornea (called an arcus senilis). This may indicate high cholesterol and/or high blood pressure; therefore, it’s wise to visit your physician if this symptom arises, particularly if accompanied by other indicators of elevated levels, such as stroke or heart attack symptoms.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is essential to contact Lukner Medical Clinic right away. Our doctors use physical exams, blood tests and possibly ultrasound scans to help identify what’s causing your health issue. Just call or book online! Our staff serve patients from Greensburg and Westmoreland County areas – don’t wait – come visit! We look forward to meeting you!


Strokes are brain injuries caused by disrupted blood flow to the brain (ischemia) or bleeding into or around it (hemorrhage). Ischemic stroke is the most frequently occurring type, as clots or plaque form in blood vessels that supply the brain – either directly from within its own vessels (intracranial haemorrhage) or travel from elsewhere to reach them from other parts of the body (extracranial haemorrhage).

Uncontrolled high blood pressure, cholesterol levels and other risk factors increase your chances of having a stroke, with damage potentially impacting all three eye layers including cornea, iris and lens. Furthermore, age-related macular degeneration occurs when a blood clot clogs an eye vein behind it causing blindness resulting in total blindness in some cases.

Other risk factors for stroke include cardiovascular disease, smoking, obstructive sleep apnea, diabetes and metabolic syndrome. If any of these apply to you, consulting your physician about managing blood pressure and cholesterol levels or treating any diseases and conditions associated with them could reduce the chance of stroke significantly.

Stroke symptoms may include weakness on one side of the face or body, sudden loss of balance or coordination, vision changes and trouble speaking. If you suspect a stroke in someone, ask them to smile and check whether one side of the mouth droops; observe whether their arms remain strong when raised upwards; if this is evident when raising arms up higher. If any of these indicators exist, call 911 immediately and go directly to a hospital emergency department.

Your healthcare provider can diagnose a stroke through physical exams and listening for any unusual sounds coming from the neck using a stethoscope to indicate carotid artery disease. They may use special devices called “thrombolytics” to remove blood clots from the brain (thrombolysis), prescribe medication to prevent future clots from forming as well as treat high blood pressure, cholesterol and other heart issues; recommend exercise, weight control and diets low in saturated fats to minimize further strokes, as well as advise exercise programs, weight control or diets low in saturated fats as preventive measures against future strokes.

About the Author:
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Alexander Suprun

Alex started his first web marketing campaign in 1997 and continues harvesting this fruitful field today. He helped many startups and well-established companies to grow to the next level by applying innovative inbound marketing strategies. For the past 26 years, Alex has served over a hundred clients worldwide in all aspects of digital marketing and communications. Additionally, Alex is an expert researcher in healthcare, vision, macular degeneration, natural therapy, and microcurrent devices. His passion lies in developing medical devices to combat various ailments, showcasing his commitment to innovation in healthcare.


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