Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes affecting the blood vessels of the retina. It may develop in association with either insulin dependent or non-insulin dependent disease. The longer you have diabetes, and the less controlled your blood sugar is, the more likely you are to develop such damage. At first, diabetic retinopathy may cause no symptoms or only mild vision changes. Eventually, however, the disease can result in blindness due to leakages, bleeding, scar tissue development, retinal detachment and glaucoma. To protect your vision, prevention is critical! Start by carefully controlling your blood sugars and other medical problems. It is recommended that all diabetics have their eyes examined at least yearly.