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Uveitis

Inflammation of the middle layer of the eye, the uvea.

PubMed Health Glossary
(Source: Wiktionary)

About Uveitis

Uveitis is a general term describing a group of inflammatory diseases that produces swelling and destroys eye tissues. These diseases can slightly reduce vision or lead to severe vision loss.

The term "uveitis" is used because the diseases often affect a part of the eye called the uvea. Nevertheless, uveitis is not limited to the uvea. These diseases also affect the lens, retina, optic nerve, and vitreous, producing reduced vision or blindness.

Uveitis may be caused by problems or diseases occurring in the eye or it can be part of an inflammatory disease affecting other parts of the body.

It can happen at all ages and primarily affects people between 20 — 60 years old.

Uveitis can last for a short (acute) or a long (chronic) time. The severest forms of uveitis reoccur many times... More about Uveitis NIH - National Eye Institute

What works? Research summarized

Evidence reviews

Comparison of artificial lenses placed in eyes with uveitis during cataract surgery

Cataract, a cloudy lens within the eye, is a major complication in people with uveitis (inflammation of the middle layer of the eye). Different types of artificial lenses (intraocular lenses, IOLs) are available to insert into the eye after removal of the cloudy natural lens during cataract surgery. The purpose of this review is to summarize the effects of different artificial lenses in adults with uveitis.

Vitrektomie bei Uveitis im Kindes- und Jugendalter [Update on vitrectomy for pediatric uveitis]

PURPOSE: The role of vitrectomy in pediatric uveitis has as yet not been established. Addressing this question has been reinforced since the recent introduction of the new and relatively well tolerated medical treatment options using biologicals, i. e. TNFalpha blocking agents.

Rifabutin for treating pulmonary tuberculosis

Among current challenges in tuberculosis treatment are reducing the length of time that drugs must be taken to less than six months and finding ways to safely combine tuberculosis drugs with those used in the treatment of HIV infection. Rifabutin is a drug that has the potential to address these issues if substituted for rifampicin, a mainstay of current treatment. This review identified five trials involving 924 people, but none were of high quality. The review found no significant differences between rifabutin‐ and rifampicin‐containing treatment in curing tuberculosis and preventing relapse, but higher doses of rifabutin might be associated with more adverse effects and there was no evidence that it could shorten treatment. However, very few people with HIV and tuberculosis, who are most likely to benefit from use of rifabutin due to its lack of interaction with antiretroviral drugs, were included in the trials. Better quality clinical trials are needed to understand the place of rifabutin in the treatment of people with tuberculosis, particularly those who also have HIV.

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Summaries for consumers

Comparison of artificial lenses placed in eyes with uveitis during cataract surgery

Cataract, a cloudy lens within the eye, is a major complication in people with uveitis (inflammation of the middle layer of the eye). Different types of artificial lenses (intraocular lenses, IOLs) are available to insert into the eye after removal of the cloudy natural lens during cataract surgery. The purpose of this review is to summarize the effects of different artificial lenses in adults with uveitis.

Rifabutin for treating pulmonary tuberculosis

Among current challenges in tuberculosis treatment are reducing the length of time that drugs must be taken to less than six months and finding ways to safely combine tuberculosis drugs with those used in the treatment of HIV infection. Rifabutin is a drug that has the potential to address these issues if substituted for rifampicin, a mainstay of current treatment. This review identified five trials involving 924 people, but none were of high quality. The review found no significant differences between rifabutin‐ and rifampicin‐containing treatment in curing tuberculosis and preventing relapse, but higher doses of rifabutin might be associated with more adverse effects and there was no evidence that it could shorten treatment. However, very few people with HIV and tuberculosis, who are most likely to benefit from use of rifabutin due to its lack of interaction with antiretroviral drugs, were included in the trials. Better quality clinical trials are needed to understand the place of rifabutin in the treatment of people with tuberculosis, particularly those who also have HIV.

Antibiotics compared with no treatment or placebo for the treatment of toxoplasma retinochoroiditis

Toxoplasma retinochoroiditis occurs when a parasite called toxoplasma gondii gets into the retina (the light sensitive layer inside the eye) and the choroid (layer of the eyeball near the retina). This causes inflammation that can scar the retina and reduce vision. Symptoms include a sudden feeling of discomfort in the eye and loss of vision which usually resolve spontaneously within six to eight weeks. The infection can keep returning, increasing the chances of damage. Antibiotics are sometimes used to try and reduce the inflammation and scarring, or to prevent the infection from re‐emerging, but it is not known how well they work. The review found three studies with a total of 173 participants of any age which compared antibiotics with no treatment or a placebo. Two studies examined the effect of antibiotics on reducing the recurrence of episodes of the disease. One study found that in Brazilian adults infected with the more aggressive South American strains of the parasite who have frequently recurring eye symptoms, long‐term antibiotics over 14 months reduced the number of recurrent episodes of retinochoroiditis. The second study did not find that short‐term treatment with antibiotics made any difference. Side effects of giving antibiotics such as decreased white blood cells, loss of appetite, rashes and other allergic reactions, were investigated in two studies involving the antibiotic pyrimethamine: only weak evidence was found that antibiotics increase the risk of side effects. In all studies, there were problems with the design, conduct and analyses, which could have biased the results. There was a lack of evidence about whether antibiotics (short‐ or long‐term) prevent vision loss. More trials are needed, including trials of newer antibiotics.

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More about Uveitis

Photo of a young adult

Also called: Intraocular inflammation

Other terms to know:
Uvea

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