Thickening of the center of the retina from diabetes mellitus, diabetic macular edema (DME), is a common cause of vision impairment and blindness in the United States.1 Diabetic macular edema is associated with increased intraocular levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF).2 Vascular endothelial growth factor also can cause proliferation of new vasculature on the surface of the retina (neovascularization of the disc or elsewhere), termed proliferative diabetic retinopathy. Left untreated, DME or proliferative diabetic retinopathy may damage the retina, causing substantial vision loss.
Jampol LM, Glassman AR, Bressler NM. Comparative Effectiveness Trial for Diabetic Macular EdemaThree Comparisons for the Price of 1 Study From the Diabetic Retinopathy Clinical Research Network. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2015;133(9):983-984. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2015.1880