Digital photos can help detect treatable disease

An Internet-based screening approach can help identify patients with treatable diabetic eye disease, according to a study in Optometry and Vision Science. The article, “Utility of Hard Exudates for the Screening of Macular Edema,” reported that using digital photographs of the eye taken at the doctor's office or clinic, eye specialists can reliably detect "hard exudates"—a key early sign of diabetes-related macular edema, one of the most serious vision-threatening changes in the eyes of people with diabetes. Optometrists and ophthalmologists can diagnose macular edema, but eye doctors aren’t available everywhere. In EyePACS and similar remote screening programs, primary care doctors or nurses take digital photographs of the eye, which are then sent for remote viewing and diagnosis by eyecare experts. Read more at