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Diabetic Retinopathy

What is Diabetic Retinopathy ?

Diabetic retinopathy is a potentially blinding complication of diabetes that damages the eye's retina. It effects half of all Americans diagnosed with diabetes, and has been “ranked as the fifth most common cause of preventable blindness and fifth most common cause of moderate to severe visual impairment.” 

Only 6% of patients with Diabetes end up losing their vision. Blindness is largely preventable if  the patient and the medical team work together.

 

The strategy for managing diabetic retinopathy is inseparable from managing the metabolism, which means using an integration of medications, blood sugar testing, lifestyle habits, diet, supplementation and acupuncture.

Long lasting glucose imbalances in the blood can lead to damage to the retina which may not be obvious at first, but the consequences can get worse with time and severely threatening vision.

Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy include: 

  • Blurry or distorted vision

  • Difficulty reading 

  • Eye floaters

  • Shadow cast across your field of vision

  • Impaired color vision

  • Eye pain

  • Reactive hypoglycemia 

  • Elevated Hba1c levels

What can taproot acupuncture & herbs
do for Diabetic Retinopathy ?

Blindness is avoidable!

 

At taproot, we provide you with a complete integrative protocol that includes acupuncture, micro-current stimulation for your eyes, personalized herbal formulas and supplements, as well as lifestyle and nutrition recommendations. 

Acupuncture treatment benefits the eyes by regulating blood flow and improving the circulation to the back of the eye. By improving the circulation, the weakened vessels are slowly repaired, macular edema can diminish, and fat deposits are potentially able to be flushed out..

Man with Glasses

In a controlled clinical trial, Hubei Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine ophthalmology department researchers gave patients with diabetic retinopathy acupuncture treatments every two days for 2 months as well as herbal formulas.

They determined that herbal medicine therapy  alone benefits vision, and that the addition of acupuncture to the treatment protocol significantly improved patient outcomes. 

Total effective rate was 71.4%

 

Reference:

  1. Zhu Dan (2018) “Clinical Observation on Acupuncture Combined with He Xue Ming Mu Tablets in Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy” Journal of Hubei University of Chinese Medicine Vol. 20 (4), pp. 87-89.

Your treatment plan to improve vision & eye health ​​

 

  We recommend you commit to coming 3 times a week for at least one month. 

  • Prior to treatment,  we recommend that you receive testing from your local eye doctor to establish a baseline.

  • Bring your report of findings to the initial consultation and assessment

  • Therapy might include acupuncture,  electro-acupuncture or micro current therapy (see below).

  • Receive a customized plan for diet, exercise, vitamins & supplements, herbal formulas, breathing exercises and eye exercises to improve maintenance while at home.

  • Reassess your vision after your treatments with your ophthalmologist.

 

Maintenance and continued treatments are possible if the patient showed an obvious positive response. Maintenance treatments can be offered monthly or seasonally, depending on your needs. ​

 

And of course, no needle ever goes into the eye.

acupuncture for diabetic retinopathy

Acupuncture
for the eyes

Acupuncture is the use of very thin, sterile needles that are inserted into specific points on the body, face and ears to promote circulation  and blood flow in and around the eyes, promoting eye cell metabolism and detoxification. Acupuncture is painless and has almost no side effects.

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Chinese herbal
formulas

Each herbal formula is a unique combination of Chinese herbs specifically designed to address you as a whole : your body type,  medical history and specific

eye condition. 

You will go home with your own mix of granules to drink daily, during treatment and maintenance phase. Research shows promising results for eye health using herbs alongside acupuncture.

electro acupuncture for diabetic retinopathy

E-stim
Electro-acupuncture

Electro-acupuncture or

e-stim combines acupuncture needles with low-level electricity. It increases stimulation to key points around the eyes.

Eye conditions that respond favorably to e-stim include RP, dry AMD, optic atrophy, retinal occlusions, normal tension glaucoma and lazy eye.

Grapefruit and Vitamins

Nutrition
& supplements

For nourishing your eyes from the inside, we will recommend a targeted plan of carefully chosen vitamins and minerals, and discuss best food options to optimize ocular function.

All our recommendations focus on anti-oxydants, enzymes, or 

phytonutrients that have been thoroughly researched for your eye condition.

Micro-current
for the eyes

Electrical stimulation has a long history in ophthalmology and was thought to be beneficial as early as 1873. It works by administering external electric impulses to the region around the eyes and triggers brain neuroplasticity.

Image by 青 晨

Breathing, Yoga
& eye exercises

Eye exercises have been around for thousands of years in the Chinese culture.

Daily eye exercises help

 promote better flow of blood, oxygen and energy through the eyes.   

There are many muscles in the eyes that control how well we see, and they are trainable like any other muscle in the body to become stronger and more flexible.