Racial disparities in the screening and treatment of diabetic retinopathy

Joseph M. Coney, Adrienne W. Scott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Diabetic retinopathy is a progressive disease and primary retinal vascular complication of diabetes mellitus, the third leading cause of blindness in the United States. Racial and ethnic minorities are more likely to suffer from diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema, and typically undergo less screening. Lack of screening is due to a variety of factors, such as patient, provider, and institutional barriers. Due to the disparity in screening, minorities often present with more advanced stages of diabetic eye disease. As the minority population increases, the burden of treatment for these patients will also increase. It is imperative to understand the barriers and social determinants of health limiting visual outcomes in minority populations. Diabetic retinopathy and its complications are often preventable if detected and treated early. Advances in screening technology and intravitreal anti-VEGF injections have changed the landscape in preventing vision loss in diabetic patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-181
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the National Medical Association
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2022


  • Barriers
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Diabetic retinopathy screening
  • Disparities in eye care
  • Minority health screening

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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