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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Is “iritis” the same things as uveitis? What is “uveitis” and are there different types?

    I have been told by my ophthalmologist that I have Uveitis. I have a friend who has Iritis, is this the same thing? I don't really understand the difference and what this means for me.
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    Dr John H. Chang

    Ophthalmologist (Eye Specialist)

    Dr John Chang is a Sydney-based ophthalmologist with specialist training in cataract surgery, medical retina and comprehensive ophthalmology. At his Strathfield practice, Dr Chang provides ... View Profile

    Uveitis refers to disease where there is sight-threatening inflammation inside the eye and it is an umbrella term that covers a rather broad range of conditions ranging from autoimmune diseases to infections. Uveitis can be classified into various types depending on the part of the eye that is predominantly affected. The most common type of uveitis is called “anterior uveitis”, and this affects the front part of the eye. Anterior uveitis is often also referred to as “iritis” as the iris (which gives the eye its “colour”) is inflamed. Acute iritis typically causes an acutely red eye that is painful and light sensitive. “Intermediate uveitis” affects the vitreous jelly part of the eye. “Posterior uveitis” affects the back part of the eye such as the retina and choroid. “Panuveitis” affects the entire eye from the front to the back of the eye. Uveitis is a serious eye condition that can cause pain and vision loss and hence it warrants prompt assessment by an eye specialist.

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