May also be called: Uveitis; Iritis; Anterior Uveitis
Iridocyclitis (ear-ih-doh-sy-CLY-tis) is inflammation of the iris and ciliary body, structures in the middle layer of the eye (uvea).
The iris is the colored part of the eye. The dark circle at the center of the iris is the pupil. The iris controls the amount of light entering the eye through the pupil. Adjacent to the iris is the ciliary body, a ring of tissue that encircles the eye's lens. The ciliary body helps control the shape of the lens and secretes a fluid called aqueous humor that provides nutrients to the eye.
Iridocyclitis occurs when both the iris and ciliary body become inflamed. This can happen due to an injury, infection, a related condition such as arthritis, or for no apparent reason. Iridocyclitis can make eyes red, painful, and sensitive to light. And in rare cases, it can eventually lead to vision loss.
Most cases of iridocyclitis are mild and temporary and will clear up in a few days or weeks. Iridocyclitis caused by an infection or disease usually can be corrected by treating the underlying condition. Treatment should start as early as possible to minimize the risk of vision damage.
All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.
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