What is Scleritis?

Scleritis is an uncommon and serious disorder that causes inflammation in the middle layer between the white of the eye and the colored iris. It is usually a painful experience and can even threaten an individual's eyesight. If left untreated, the cornea can become weak and distorted, leading to vision loss in severe cases.

What Causes Scleritis?

The cause of scleritis is unknown. Although there is no clear identified cause, many researchers have linked the onset of scleritis to conditions such as autoimmune diseases, infections, and eye trauma.

Signs and Symptoms of Scleritis

  • Severe and lasting eye pain
  • Painful sensitivity to light
  • Blurred vision
  • Redness of the eye
  • Tearing
  • Increased sensitivity to touch

Diagnosing Scleritis

To diagnose scleritis, your doctor will conduct a comprehensive eye exam. This may include slit-lamp examination to view the interior of the eye and imaging tests such as ultrasound or MRI to look for signs of inflammation. In some cases, your doctor may take a biopsy of the affected tissue to rule out other conditions.

Treating Scleritis

Treatment for scleritis typically includes an anti-inflammatory medication, such as prednisone, to reduce the inflammation and decrease pain. More severe cases of scleritis may require a stronger medication, such as an immunosuppressant. In rare cases, surgery may be recommended if other treatments are not successful.