People with type 2 diabetes have a risk of developing high blood pressure. High blood pressure increases the risk for microaneurysms in the eye, which are characteristic of eye disorders like retinopathy. A new study done in England shows good blood pressure control significantly lowered the risk of developing microaneurysms in the eye, which can ultimately lead to blindness.
For the study researchers randomly assigned about 1,150 patients with high blood pressure and diabetes to either a tightly controlled blood pressure group, which aimed to reduce blood pressure to less than 150/85 millimeters of mercury, or to a standard group, which aimed for a blood pressure of less than 180/105 millimeters of mercury. The patients were followed for 4.5 years.
About 23 percent of those in the tightly controlled blood pressure group experienced five or more microaneurysms, compared to about 33 percent of those in the standard control group. Thus researchers say,ophthalmologists treating diabetic patients should tell them about the benefits of blood pressure control in reducing loss of vision from diabetic retinopathy.