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Iritis (Uveitis)

The iris, the colored part of the eye, is muscle tissue with a thin layer of pigment laying on the surface.  The function of the iris muscle is to decrease the pupil size in bright light and increase the pupil size in darkness.  Iritis is an inflammation of this iris muscle.  The cause of the inflammation of iris tissue is generally unknown.  In some cases, it is secondary to other inflammations in the body, however iritis can also be caused by trauma to the eye or infection of other parts of the eye that are in close proximity to the iris.
    Classic symptoms of iritis involve eye pain and sensitivity to light.  The intensity of pain and light sensitivity can range anywhere from a slight discomfort and sensitivity to severe pain and extreme sensitivity to light.  Iritis is a condition that needs to be very closely monitored.  One of the most important segments of your treatment plan involves regular visits to the office for re-evaluation.
    Treatment for iritis generally involves keeping the pupil of the affected eye dilated so the muscle tissue does not remain active while the iris is inflamed.  This dilation helps reduce some of the pain associated with this condition.  Antibiotics and/or anti-inflammatory agents may also be prescribed.  Any changes in your condition other than improvement must be reported as soon as possible.  Take special care to ensure that all of your prescribed medications are used exactly in the amounts and at the intervals prescribed.
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