Uveitis is classified anatomically into anterior, intermediate, posterior, and panuveitic forms based on the part of the eye primarily affected
Symptoms of Uveitis
- Redness of the eye
- Blurred vision
- Photophobia or sensitivity to light
- Irregular pupil
- Eye pain
- Floaters, which are dark spots that float in the visual field
- Signs of anterior uveitis include dilated ciliary vessels, presence of cells and flare in the anterior chamber, and keratic precipitates (“KP”) on the posterior surface of the cornea. In severe inflammation there may be evidence of a hypopyon. Old episodes of uveitis are identified by pigment deposits on lens, KPs, and festooned pupil on dilation of pupil.
What is uveitis?
Uveitis is inflammation of the ‘uvea’ of the eye. The uvea is made up of three parts. The first part is the iris, which is the colored ring of tissue you can see in the mirror. The dark hole in the middle of the iris is the pupil. The second and third parts, which you cannot see directly when looking in a mirror, are the ciliary body and the choroid. They are located behind the iris. An ophthalmologist can visualize them using special examination equipment.
Inflammation of the iris is called iritis. Inflammation of the ciliary body is called intermediate uveitis or cyclitis. Inflammation of the choroid is called choroiditis. Inflammation of all three is called panuveitis.
What are symptoms of uveitis?
Symptoms of uveitis can include some or all of the following:
- Aching, painful eye(s)
- Red, bloodshot eye(s)
- Sensitivity to light (increased pain when eyes are exposed to light, called photophobia)
- Blurred, cloudy vision
- Floaters (random spots in the visual field)
What is the treatment for uveitis?
Because uveitis is an inflammatory condition, the urgent treatment centers on control of the inflammation. This can be achieved with steroids given as eye drops, injection in or around the eye, orally (by mouth), or intravenously, depending on the extent and severity of the inflammation.