Uveitis in one of the inflammatory eye diseases, in which middle layer of the eye walls is affected (Uvea).

Warning signs of uveitis usually appear suddenly and worsen rapidly. These signs include eye redness, pain and blurry vision. Uveitis can affect one or both eyes together, and affects people mainly in 20 – 50 years old; however, it can affect children.

Probable causes of uveitis include infection, injury, autoimmune or inflammatory disorders, but sometimes it may be idiopathic.

Uveitis can be a serious disease and may lead to permanent loss of vision, so early diagnosis and treatment are very important to prevent uveitis complications.

Uveitis is a chronic (persistent) disease, so patients with it must be followed over a long period and sometimes may be for lifetime, as the disease may be stable or progress over the years, Sometimes it appears as sudden attacks with or without any warning signs. It can also appear and resolve without any damage or frequent attacks.

Close medical follow up and treatment can achieve balance and control of uveitis in most of the patients, however, it should be noted that uveitis is still one of the most common causes of poor vision in western countries, and sometimes, even with treatment, can be complicated and causes severe damage to the vision.

Symptoms, signs and features of Uveitis:

  • Eye redness.
  • Eye pain.
  • Photosensitivity.
  • Blurring of vision.
  • Pigmented spots floating in the visual fields (floaters).
  • Diminution of vision.

Symptoms may appear suddenly and progress rapidly, however in some cases, it may occur gradually and can affect one or both eyes.

Uvea is the middle layer of eye wall. It consists of iris, ciliary body and choroid. It's located between retina and sclera. Retina is the inner layer of the eye, and sclera is the outer white layer of the eye. Uvea provides deeper layers of the retina with blood flow. Type of the uveitis depends on the affected part or parts of the eye:

  • Iritis (Anterior uveitis) is the most common type of uveitis.
  • Cyclitis (Middle uveitis) affects ciliary body.
  • Iritis and choroiditis (Posterior uveitis) affects posterior part or the uvea.
  • Diffuse iritis (Pan Uveitis) affects all parts of the uvea.

In all these types, inflammation of vitreous humor can occur, leading to inflammatory cells infiltrates.

When to seek doctor's advice?

You should call your doctor if you think you have warning signs of uveitis. If you experience acute and severe eye pain with unexpected diminution of vision, you should seek medical care immediately.

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