Diabetic eye disease epidemiology
“THE 24.7 per cent prevalence of reported diabetic eye disease (DED) in Europe is much lower than the global burden of 34.6 per cent, but we will continue to see an increase in cases in Europe, and future healthcare planning needs to take this into consideration,” said Robert Finger, Bonn University Eye Hospital, Germany.
Dr Finger presented his epidemiologic data of diabetic eye disease to delegates at the ESCRS/EURETINA Symposium: The Diabetic Eye, on Saturday afternoon. The data were based on an analysis of 38 studies that examined a total of more than 200,000 people with mostly type 2 diabetes.
“Of all European nations studied, the lowest prevalence of DED was seen in France and Germany, with a significantly lower prevalence of proliferative diabetic retinopathy in France, he said. “There was no significant difference between northern and southern Europe.”
And although DED risk factors and management differ between EU countries, all will experience an increase in cases.
“By 2050, the number of persons with DED is expected to rise by 34 per cent to 8.6 million people in the EU,” said Dr Finger. “Of these, around one-third will require close monitoring and/or treatment due to advanced disease stages.”
Fortunately, with improved screening and care, the prevalence of so-called diabetic blindness has decreased significantly as compared to 30 years ago, and the current European prevalence of diabetic blindness is nearly zero.