Information for healthcare professionals about PDR.

Diabetic retinopathy is a complication of diabetes whereby prolonged hyperglycaemia damages the microvasculature of the retina.1 Proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) is characterised by the growth of new blood vessels from the retinal surface to towards the vitreous cavity in response to chronic retinal hypoxia.1

Approximately 7% of people with diabetes have PDR.2 Patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes are at risk of developing the condition, and the risk increases with increasing time since diagnosis. However, good control of blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure can help reduce the risk.3

Treatment options for PDR may include laser, anti-VEGF treatment or vitrectomy.4


VEGF, vascular endothelial growth factor.


  1. Bardello F et al. Clinical Strategies in the Management of Diabetic Retinopathy. Berlin Heidelberg, Springer, 2014.
  2. Yau JWY et al. Diabetes Care 2012;35(3):556–564.
  3. Moorfields Eye Hospital. Proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR). Available at: https://www.moorfields.nhs.uk/sites/default/files/Proliferative%20diabetic%20retinopathy%20%28PDR%29.pdf [Accessed June 2020].
  4. Diabetes.co.uk. Proliferative retinopathy. Available at: https://www.diabetes.co.uk/diabetes-complications/proliferative-retinopathy.html [Accessed June 2020].
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OPT20-E023a September 2020.

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