“I have rigorous checks on my eyesight every four months”
Cristina Pérez has suffered from type 1 diabetes since childhood and diabetic retinopathy from the age of 18: “I undergo tests like angiographies or OCT to control the progression of the disease”
Cristina Pérez, a physiotherapist by profession, is 36. As a child, she found out that she suffered from type 1 diabetes. She has spent all her life living with the disease and taking good care of herself so it interferes with her projects as little as possible. When she came of age, she was diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy, which is progressively worsening her eyesight: “I have suffered from myopia and astigmatism since I was six but when I was 18 I was diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy. This obliges me to undergo rigorous checks every four months depending on medical opinion and the state of my eyesight. Therefore, it’s essential to be treated by specialists who can help you manage the disease”. In these exhaustive checks on her eyesight, Cristina explains that ““I undergo tests like angiographies or OCT to control the progression of the disease. They also give me an eyesight test each time I go”.
For Cristina, accepting the diagnosis is one of the keys to facing up to life normally, together with looking after her health or and having her condition monitored: “It is important to normalise the situation and be aware of the importance both of diet and of exercise. Diabetes is our disease and it affects a lot of the systems in our body, including our eyes. It is essential to realise that check-ups are necessary and that it is vital to surround yourself with specialists who can help you to manage the disease”.
As well as the vital nature of family support, Cristina believes that research is key to her progress: “Research is really necessary and also publicising what is being carried out. It’s very important for us to know that progress is being made”.