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Breaking down the barriers to eye care

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Breaking down the barriers to eye care
Dr. Michael Brent

​​​​​​​Krembil’s Dr. Michael Brent is one of the leading forces behind the national network Diabetes Action Canada. Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness among working-age Canadians.​

​​​Kremb​il researchers tackling diabetes are constantly innovating to make retinal screening easier

Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness among working-age Canadians. Yet, many people living with the disease fail to get regular examinations that can detect changes in their eyes, signalling diabetes-related complications.

A national network has been set up to encourage earlier diagnoses of eye problems and ensure better health outcomes for more than three million Canadians with the disease.​

Dr. Michael Brent, a clinician investigator at the Krembil Research Institute and ophthalmologist at the Donald K. Johnson Eye Institute, says that diabetes particularly affects the eyes. A disease called diabetic retinopathy, which can lead to hemorrhaging of the blood vessels in the retina, is present in up to two-thirds of patients who have had diabetes for 10 years or more, he notes. Yet, studies show that one-third of Canadians living with diabetes have not had an eye examination in the last two years or more.