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Tech giving those with diabetes options for eye testing

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"He was diagnosed at age 6. The summer of his kindergarten," Patty Palladino said.

Her 14-year-old son has been living with Type 1 diabetes since he was a kid.

She calls it a monster of a disease.

Constantly having to poke a fingertip or suffer through a shot is one thing, but there is something that Palladino's son hates above all else: the eye test.

"I used to bribe him with a Lego set or something at the store. You'll go buy whatever you want if you just go get the eye test done," Palladino said.

Once someone is diagnosed, diabetics are told to go in for an annual eye test for retinopathy.

It is a diabetic complication that can cause blindness.

It is another invasive test that can be especially uncomfortable for kids — until recently.

"It takes pictures of the retina, which is the back of the eye and it's looking for bleeding caused by diabetes," Valerie Rarick, a retinal imaging technologist for HealPros, said.

Rarick spends her time traveling around New York taking pictures of retinas.

"I send these digitally to my company and we have ophthalmologist staff, and they review the pictures and then the results go to both the primary care doctor and the member," Rarick said.

Rarick said this is not a replacement for the care of an ophthalmologist, but they are looking for patients who might be home bound or unable to travel and for people Palladino's son who hates the other test.

"He's so nervous about that his blood sugar is going up and down and all over the place they day he has to go in. So, this would be just a flash and go on with your life," Palladino said.

An easier option to help those with diabetes live a healthy life.

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