Eye examination for diabetes and hypertension
A look into the eye can reveal the silent damage wrought by high blood pressure and diabetes and reflect the risk of a future stroke or heart attack. High blood pressure and diabetes damage blood vessels throughout the body. Four large studies have shown that people with changes in their retinal blood vessels from high blood pressure (known as hypertensive retinopathy) are two to four times as likely to have a stroke as people without such changes, reports the Harvard Heart Letter. Other studies have found that people with hypertensive retinopathy have a higher risk for heart attacks and heart failure. The link tends to be strongest in women, indicating that women may be more affected than men by damage to small blood vessels (so-called microvascular changes) from high blood pressure and diabetes.