Also known as: panuveitis, anterior uveitis, iritis, intermediate uveitis, posterior uveitis, choroiditis.

What is uveitis?

The uvea is the middle colored layer of the eye that supplies blood and nourishment to the eye. Uveitis refers to the inflammation or swelling of this layer which can involve the whole of the uvea (panuveitis), or any part of it (like the front part-anterior uveitis or iritis, middle-intermediate uveitis or pars planitis, or back-posterior uveitis or choroiditis).

What causes uveitis?

Uveitis can occur after an injury or trauma, an infection (bacterial, viral, and occasionally fungal or parasitic), or as part of a related autoimmune disease (like inflammatory bowel disease). In many children no cause may be found.

What are the symptoms of uveitis?

In some children there may be no symptoms and the condition is only found because the eye examination is part of the monitoring of another disorder (like inflammatory bowel disease or juvenile rheumatoid arthritis). When symptoms are present, common ones include redness of the eyes, eye pain, swelling, light sensitivity, blurry vision or seeing floating specks or clouds within the field of vision.

What are uveitis care options?

Uveitis requires treatment as soon as possible. If left untreated, it can lead to long-term damage to the eye. Potential treatments to reduce inflammation include eye drops (especially corticosteroids), oral medications or eye injections. For light sensitivity dark glasses may be recommended.

Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP

This page was last updated on: September 06, 2019 03:32 PM