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Retina Associates of New York

Retina Specialists & Retina Surgeons located in New York, Forest Hills & New Rochelle, NY

Uveitis is an inflammatory process that can make your eyes red and painful. It can also lead to permanent vision loss if not treated. The board-certified retinal specialists at Retina Associates of New York have significant expertise in accurately diagnosing and treating uveitis. These dedicated physicians serve NYC from three locations: Upper East Side, Manhattan; Forest Hills, Queens; and New Rochelle. Each facility offers personalized care and advanced treatment for uveitis. Schedule an appointment today. Call one of the offices or book your visit online.

Uveitis Q & A

What is uveitis?

Uveitis is a type of eye inflammation that affects the middle layer of tissue in the eyewall (uvea). The uvea lies beneath the sclera (white of your eye) and has three parts:

  • The iris, which is the colored portion of your eye
  • The layer of blood vessels and connective tissue that lies between the sclera and back of the retina (choroid layer)
  • The ciliary body, which secretes the watery transparent fluid (aqueous humor) that nourishes the lens and cornea and gives your eye its shape

Uveitis can affect one, two, or all three parts of the uvea. It may occur in one or both eyes and is more common in adults aged 20-50 but can also affect children. Without proper treatment, uveitis can lead to severe complications that may cause vision loss.

What are the symptoms of uveitis?

The symptoms of uveitis often come on suddenly and worsen quickly, and may include:

  • Eye redness and pain
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Blurred or decreased vision
  • Increase of dark, floating spots in your visual field (floaters)

Sometimes, however, these symptoms occur gradually and are easy to mistake for infections such as pink eye.

What causes uveitis?

Uveitis can be caused by:

  • An autoimmune disorder, such as ulcerative colitis
  • An inflammatory disorder, such as sarcoidosis
  • Eye injury sustained during an accident or previous eye surgery
  • An infection, such as herpes zoster, toxoplasmosis, Lyme disease, or West Nile virus

In about half of all cases of uveitis, a direct cause is never found.

What are the complications of uveitis?

If left untreated, depending on which part of the uvea is affected, uveitis can cause:

  • Damage to the optic nerve
  • Retinal detachment
  • Glaucoma
  • Cataracts
  • Permanent vision loss

How do you treat uveitis?

The goal is to reduce the consequences of uveitis that can be threatening your vision, so treatment often depends on the severity of the inflammation and which part of the uvea is affected.

Your therapy may include:

  • Medication to reduce inflammation, delivered via eye drops, pills, or an eye injection
  • Drugs that fight bacteria or viruses, including antibiotics or antiviral medications
  • Immunosuppressive therapy

For expert eye care delivered in a welcoming environment, schedule a visit today at Retina Associates of New York. Call the closest office or book your appointment online.