The sclera is the white outer wall of the eye. Scleritis is present when this area becomes swollen or inflamed.
Inflammation - sclera
Scleritis is often linked to autoimmune diseases. These diseases occur when the body's immune system attacks and destroys healthy body tissue by mistake. Rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus are examples of autoimmune diseases. Sometimes the cause is unknown.
Scleritis occurs most often in people between the ages of 30 and 60. It is rare in children.
Symptoms of scleritis include:
A rare form of this disease causes no eye pain or redness.
Treatments for scleritis may include:
If scleritis is caused by an underlying disease, treatment of that disease may be needed.
In most cases, the condition goes away with treatment. But it may come back.
The disorder causing scleritis may be serious. However, it may not be discovered the first time you have the problem. The outcome will depend on the specific disorder.
Complications may include:
Call your provider or ophthalmologist if you have symptoms of scleritis.
Most cases cannot be prevented.
People with autoimmune diseases, may need to have regular check-ups with an ophthalmologist familiar with the condition.
Published Date: August 18, 2020
Published By: Franklin W. Lusby, MD, ophthalmologist, Lusby Vision Institute, La Jolla, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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