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Home » News and Events » HOW HYPERTENSION CAN AFFECT THE EYES

HOW HYPERTENSION CAN AFFECT THE EYES

While most people correctly associate high blood pressure with a greater risk of heart problems, hypertension can also exert adverse effects on the eyes. For example, hypertension can damage the blood vessels that supply the retina (the light-sensitive tissue that lines the back of the inner eye). If so, “retinopathy” can result in bleeding in the eye, blurred vision, and even vision loss. Those who have diabetes in addition to high blood pressure face even greater risk. Hypertension can also lead to fluid buildup under the retina due to a leaky blood vessel. “Choroidopathy” can result in distorted vision or vision-impairing scarring. Nerve damage (“optic neuropathy”) may also result from hypertension, which can also lead to vision loss. A direct look into the eyes during an eye examination can actually lead to a diagnosis of high blood pressure. As the heart pumps, pressure forces blood to move through the arteries.  Hypertension, or high blood pressure, can damage blood vessels in the eyes.  Most people will not experience symptoms of retinopathy, but the condition can be detected during a routine eye health examination.