Misdiagnosis of Diabetic Retinopathy
Misdiagnosis of Diabetic Retinopathy
A diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy and its underlying cause of diabetes may be delayed or missed because diabetic retinopathy generally develops gradually. In early stages, there may be no symptoms, and people may be unaware of having diabetes or diabetic retinopathy until complications, such as blurred vision, develop. In addition, some symptoms of diabetic retinopathy, such as blurred vision, seeing spots, change in vision, sudden loss of vision, and eye pain, are similar to symptoms of other diseases and conditions. These include macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts, aging, retinal detachment, retinal vein occlusion, and optic neuritis...more about Diabetic Retinopathy »
Alternative diagnoses list for Diabetic Retinopathy:
For a diagnosis of Diabetic Retinopathy,
the following list of conditions
have been mentioned in sources
as possible alternative diagnoses
to consider during the diagnostic process for Diabetic Retinopathy:
Diseases for which Diabetic Retinopathy may be an alternative diagnosis
The other diseases for which Diabetic Retinopathy
is listed as a possible alternative
diagnosis in their lists include:
Diabetic Retinopathy: Hidden Causes Misdiagnosed?
Causes of Diabetic Retinopathy may include these medical conditions:
Diabetic Retinopathy: Medical Mistakes
Related medical mistakes may include:
Diabetic Retinopathy: Undiagnosed Conditions
Commonly undiagnosed conditions in related areas may include:
In-Depth Reports: Diagnosis and Misdiagnosis
Diabetes diagnosis and misdiagnosis (In-Depth Report): Detailed report on diabetes misdiagnoses, rare curable types, and
less common diagnostic issues....read full report »
Read more about Misdiagnosis and Diabetic Retinopathy
Common Misdiagnoses and Diabetic Retinopathy
Metabolic syndrome often undiagnosed: Metabolic syndrome, also known as Syndrome X, is
an often overlooked medical condition that causes a cluster of chronic symptoms.
There are often four symptoms and conditions combined: obesity, hypertension (high blood pressure),
high cholesterol, and diabetes (Type 2 diabetes) or in come cases pre-diabetes initially.
See the introduction to metabolic syndrome.
Heart attacks can be undiagnosed: Although the most severe symptoms of heart attack are hard to miss,
there are varying degrees of severity.
It is altogether too common for people to die from undiagnosed heart attack, or from delaying too long
to call for emergency help.
The prognosis for treatment is far better for patients treated in the early stages of a heart attack.
The most common misdiagnoses include heartburn, or other less severe causes of chest pain.
See the introduction to heart attack and the symptoms of heart attack.
Heart attacks can be overdiagnosed: Although many people die from heart attacks, there are also
many cases where people fear that they have a heart attack, but actually have something milder.
Some of the conditions which may be causes of chest pain, causing fear of a heart attack, including
an anxiety attack, heartburn, and so on.
See the causes of chest pain and the symptoms of heart attack.
Cluster of diseases with difficult diagnosis issues: There is a well-known list of
medical conditions that are all somewhat difficult to diagnose, and all can present
in a variety of different severities.
Diseases in this group include multiple sclerosis, lupus, Lyme disease, fibromyalgia,
thyroid disorders (hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism),
chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes - all of these can have vague symptoms in their early presentations.
Also, depression can have some symptoms similar to these conditions, and also the reverse,
that many of these conditions can mimic depression and be misdiagnosed as depression.
Alzheimer's disease over-diagnosed: The well-known disease of Alzheimer's disease
is often over-diagnosed.
Patients tend to assume that any memory loss or forgetulness symptom might be Alzheimer's,
whereas there are many other less severe possibilities.
Some level of memory decline is normal with aging,
and even a slight loss of acuity may be noticed in the 30's and 40's.
Other conditions can also lead a person to show greater forgetfulness.
For example, depression and depressive disorders can cause a person to
have reduced concentration and thereby poorer memory retention.
Dementia may be a drug interaction: A common scenario in aged care is for
a patient to show mental decline to dementia.
Whereas this can, of course, occur due to various medical conditions,
such as a stroke or Alzheimer's disease,
it can also occur from a side effect or interaction between multiple drugs
that the elderly patient may be taking.
There are also various other possible causes of dementia.
Tremor need not be Parkinson's disease: There is the tendency to believe that
any tremor symptom, or shakiness, means Parkinson's disease.
The reality is that there are various possibilities, such as benign essential tremor,
which is mostly harmless.
see the various causes of tremor and misdiagnosis of Parkinson's disease.
Poorly healing leg rashes a classic sign of chronic disease: Recurring leg rashes,
or poorly healing leg rashes, are a classic sign of undiagnosed diabetes,
particularly of Type 2 diabetes, but also Type 1 diabetes.
They can also occur with poor diabetic control.
However, there are many other possible causes of leg rashes.
See causes of leg rash or misdiagnosis of diabetes.
Leg cramps at night a classic sign: The symptom of having leg muscle cramps,
particularly at night, is a classic sign of undiagnosed diabetes.
However, there are also various other causes.
See causes of leg cramps or misdiagnosis of diabetes.
Rare diseases misdiagnosed as Parkinson's disease: A rare genetic
disorder is often misdiagnosed as Parkinson's disease for men in their 50's.
The disease Fragile X disorder can show only mild symptoms in the early years,
and Parkinsons-like symptoms around age 50.
See misdiagnosis of Parkinson's disease.
Over-diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension in obese patients: A diagnosis
of pulmonary hypertension, particularly pulmonary arterial hypertension,
is often a misdiagnosis in obese patients.
Exertional dyspnea leads to a diagnostic reading of high right ventricular systolic pressure,
which seems to indicate pulmonary hypertension, but is ultimately found to be an
See misdiagnosis of pulmonary hypertension.
Obesity-related conditions undiagnosed in children: A variety of conditions
are associated with obesity (see obesity), but these tend to be undiagnosed more often
in child patients than in adults.
Some of the overlooked conditions may include hypertension, diabetes, acanthosis nigricans, etc.
See misdiagnosis of obesity or introduction to obesity.
Misdiagnosed weight-related causes of infertility: A woman's weight status
can affect her level of fertility.
Although obesity or overweight can in themselves reduce fertility, there are other
weight-related or associated medical conditions that further reduce fertility.
Some of these hidden causes include COPD, diabetes, thyroid disorders (overactive thyroid
or underactive thyroid) and metabolic syndrome.
See also other causes of infertility.
Diabetic Retinopathy: Rare Types
Rare types of medical disorders and diseases in related medical areas:
General Misdiagnosis Articles
Read these general articles with an overview of misdiagnosis issues.
When checking for a misdiagnosis of Diabetic Retinopathy
or confirming a diagnosis of Diabetic Retinopathy,
it is useful to consider what other
medical conditions might be possible misdiagnoses or other alternative
conditions relevant to diagnosis.
These alternate diagnoses of Diabetic Retinopathy may already have
been considered by your doctor or may need to be considered as possible
alternative diagnoses or candidates for misdiagnosis of Diabetic Retinopathy.
For a general overview of misdiagnosis issues for all diseases,
see Overview of Misdiagnosis.