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Common Eye Problems: Uveitis

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What is Uveitis?

Uveitis happens when a collection of tissues including the focusing muscle inside the eye become inflamed. It causes eye discomfort and light sensitivity usually in just one eye. Often the discomfort is quite severe, leading the person afflicted to suspect something is in their eye. Using a specialized microscope, trained eye care professionals can readily diagnose and treat the condition.

Causes of Uveitis

Potential causes include an injury to the eye, infection, or diseases that are not infectious. Diseases that are not infectious but cause inflammatory tissue damage are referred to as autoimmune disorders. But while these conditions can cause uveitis, often there is no apparent cause.

Uveitis usually does not cause permanent vision loss. Vision may be a little blurry in the affected eye, but it is expected to recover.

Treatment

It is important for patients to be checked regularly after the diagnosis to be sure treatment is effective, particularly if it is the first time they have had the condition. The doctor will check to see if the tissues in the eye are moving freely or tending to stick to each other because of the inflammation. Sometimes lab work is requested to rule out other causes.

Uveitis responds well to medicated eye drops. A person can expect to be on drops from a week to maybe even months. It just depends on the severity and how it responds to treatment. In addition, sometimes lab work is needed to hunt down a bodily cause.

~Jace Picken, O.D.

 

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