What are the early signs of diabetic retinopathy?

Updated: Sep 02, 2021
  • Author: Abdhish R Bhavsar, MD; Chief Editor: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP  more...
  • Print

Microaneurysms are the earliest clinical sign of diabetic retinopathy and occur secondary to capillary wall outpouching due to pericyte loss. They appear as small red dots in the superficial retinal layers, and there is fibrin and red blood cell accumulation in the microaneurysm lumen. A rupture produces blot/flame hemorrhages. Affected areas may appear yellowish in time, as endothelial cells proliferate and produce basement membrane.

Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!