Diabetic retinopathy has no warning signs in the early stages; sight may not be affected until the condition is severe. As the disease progresses, symptoms may include the loss of central vision when reading or driving, loss of the ability to see colour, and mild blurring vision.
Small spots or floaters may also indicate blood vessel leaks and may clear up in days, weeks, or even months. In the most severe form, with proliferative diabetic retinopathy, there may be sudden severe vision loss from vitreous bleeding or tractional retinal detachment.
Because the disease is initially showing no symptoms, and can be treated in the earlier stages, it is important to have an eye examination each year, and immediately if you experience any of these symptoms. Late diagnosis and treatment can result in irreversible vision loss.