IRITIS - Overview , Facts, Types, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Medications


Iritis, otherwise known as anterior uveitis, is the swelling and inflammation of the iris. The iris is the colored ring located in the anterior of our eye’s uvea or the middle layer of the eye that links the retina and the white part of the eye.

The cause of iritis is still unknown. In some cases, however, such eye disorder is linked to eye trauma, genetic factors, and certain diseases.

Factors that contribute to developing iritis are as follows:

  • Blunt force trauma injury
  • Viral infections on the face like cold sores and shingles
  • Genetic predisposition and medical conditions such as arthritis
  • Behcet’s disease, which is characterized by joint problems, mouth sores, and genital sores
  • Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, which is common in children
  • Sarcoidosis or the accumulation of inflammatory cells in different parts of your body, including your eyes
  • Certain medications such as antibiotics and antiviral drugs.


If iritis is left untreated, it could lead to glaucoma or vision loss.


Iritis appears in one or both eyes. Acute arthritis happens suddenly, over hours or days, while chronic arthritis happens longer than three months. Its signs and symptoms are as follows:

  • Redness of the eye
  • Discomfort in the affected eye
  • Sudden sensitivity to light
  • Decreased vision

Immediate treatment prevents serious problems. Consult your eye specialist or ophthalmologist if you have any of the symptoms listed above. 


Your eye specialist will conduct a complete eye exam such as:

  • External examination

Your eye specialist will use a penlight to take an in-depth look at your pupils, examine the pattern of redness in the affected eye, and inspect for signs of discharge.

  • Visual acuity

Your doctor will use an eye chart and other standard tests to examine your vision’s sharpness.

  • Slit-lamp examination

In this, eye drops will be used to dilate your pupil for better results.

If your doctor suspects that another existing condition or disease is causing your aritis, he/she will suggest X-rays and blood tests.


It is crucial to treat aritis to relieve pain, inflammation and protect your vision. The treatment includes:

  • Steroid eye drops to reduce inflammation, and
  • Dilating eye drops to dilate your pupil, reduce the pain, and protects you from developing complications.

If your symptoms persist, your eye doctor may prescribe oral medications such as steroids and other anti-inflammatory agents.

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