Uveitis is the inflammation of the Uvea which is made up of Iris, Ciliary body and Choroid.
Uvea is the middle layer between the white portion i.e.Sclera and the inner layer i.e. Retina.
Many cases of uveitis are chronic, and they can produce numerous possible complications, including clouding of the cornea, cataracts, elevated eye pressure (IOP), glaucoma, swelling of the retina or retinal detachment. These complications can result in permanent vision loss.
Symptoms of uveitis:
Symptoms of anterior uveitis include:
1. light sensitivity decreased
2. Visual acuity
3. Eye pain
4. Red eyes
5. Intermediate and posterior uveitis usually are painless. Symptoms of these types of uveitis include blurred vision, typically in both eyes.
Most people who develop intermediate uveitis are in their teens, 20s or 30s.
Diffuse uveitis has a combination of symptoms of all types of uveitis.
What causes uveitis?
Eye doctors often can identify the cause of uveitis if there has been trauma to the eye or you have an infectious or immunological systemic disorder. The majority of cases of uveitis are idiopathic.
This means that the process occurs without a specific identifiable cause or an associated health problem elsewhere in the body. In some cases however, an underlying health condition may be present. Underlying causes of uveitis may be broadly categorized as autoimmune disorders, infections, trauma, malignancy or other causes.
Some of the many disorders that can cause uveitis include are:
1. Ankylosing spondylitis
2. Herpes simplex
3. Herpes zoster
4. Inflammatory bowel disease
5. Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis
8. Lyme disease
9. Multiple sclerosis
10. Psoriatic arthritis
Also, smoking has been identified as a risk factor for uveitis.
Uveitis and iritis treatment
Treatment for Uveitis will depend on which areas of the eye are affected and what has caused the condition. Medication through drops and injections is the main treatment, but surgery can be used in particularly severe cases.
STEROIDS : If your eye doctor determines you have uveitis, he or she will likely prescribe a steroid to reduce the inflammation in your eye.
Whether the steroid is administered as an eye drop, pill or injection depends on the type of uveitis you have. Because iritis affects the front of the eye, it's usually treated with eye drops.
Posterior uveitis usually requires tablets or injections. Depending on your symptoms, any of these treatments might be used for intermediate uveitis.
Steroids and other immune suppressants can produce many serious side effects, such as, high blood sugar, high blood pressure, osteoporosis and glaucoma.
This is especially true of steroids in pill form because the dose must be relatively high in order for enough of the drug to find its way to the back of the eye. So, it is important to follow your doctor's dosage instructions carefully and to keep visiting him or her regularly to monitor the progress of the treatment.
If you have anterior uveitis, your doctor likely will prescribe, in addition to steroids, pupil-dilating eye drops to reduce pain. You also may need eye drops to lower your intraocular pressure if you develop high eye pressure due to uveitis.
If you have a known systemic condition that may be contributing your uveitis, your doctor will treat that as well.