The term uveitis describes the infection of the inner section of the eye, which causes the symptoms of light sensitivity, deterioration of sight and pain. It addresses a group of different diseases and forms, which are differed by the anatomical location of the infection
The uvea consists of the iris, the corpus ciliate (ciliary body), and the choroid, and may be infected by a foreign body or autoimmune reactions. The infection of one or various elements is referred to as uveitis. Depending on the location of the infection various symptoms appear, such as reddening, loss of focus, pain, limitation of the range of vision, or points in the sight.
The following signs may indicate a uveitis: tears, pain caused by bright light, blurred range of vision, strong reddening of the eye, stingy pain. It is recommended to seek immediate advice by an ophthalmologist if a pink eye doesn’t heal after one or two days. The longer the uveitis is not treated, the larger the risk for irreparable damage up to blindness.
Uveitis can be diagnosed with help of a slit lamp or ophthalmoscopy. This also helps to identify the causes of the infection and give an overview of the disease. The infection in the eye may be caused by other illnesses, e.g. infectious, autoimmune, or rheumatic diseases. Depending on the outcome of the diagnosis further examinations are needed.
The treatment of uveitis has to be adapted to severity and development of the infection. Usually therapy starts with cortisone in drops, creams, or injections. Additionally, the pupil may be dilated with drops to prevent the iris and lens from sticking to each other, which would cause permanent deterioration of sight. A chronical uveitis is treated with immunosuppression or cortisone.