If you've been diagnosed with uveitis, chances are that you need to set up an appointment with an eye doctor to be screened and treated. But what can you expect from the experience, and exactly what are they looking for when they look at your eyes? Here's what you should know.
The Eye Exam
When you visit an eye doctor for a potential diagnosis of uveitis, they'll want to examine your eyes in-depth. This is a painless procedure, but one that can take a little time depending on how thorough they are.
The first thing your eye doctor will do is check the pressure of your eyes. This is to ensure that you don't have any other conditions impacting your eye, like glaucoma, that can impact the pressure of the overall eye and cause damage to it.
From there, they'll use an ophthalmoscope to look inside the eye. They do this by actually looking through your pupil — it's like a window to the interior of the eye. Since the interior of the eye isn't solid but rather filled with fluid, this lets them look around at both the outside and the interior of the eye.
What They're Looking For
Ophthalmoscopes are extremely powerful pieces of equipment, and can essentially act as microscopes intended purely for looking at eyes. So what your eye doctor is looking for is signs of damage.
The first thing they want to see is if there's inflammation in the tissues of the eyes. This is a common symptom with uveitis as the body's immune system attacks healthy cells in the eyes. If inflammation doesn't exist, it's a possible sign that uveitis isn't what's wrong with your eyes.
Furthermore, they'll use their equipment to look at the cells in your eyes to see if there's evidence of immunity response. Some people with uveitis experience unique floaters, as they can actually see rogue cells move across the surface of the eye as they pass the pupil. This is the same thing that your eye doctor is looking for, but from the outside looking in.
Uveitis is a controllable condition, so if your doctor does find signs of damage, they'll likely put you on medication right away. Steroid eye drops are typically provided for uveitis as they slow down the body's abnormal immune response and can bring down inflammation, swelling, and pain as well.
If you think you may have uveitis, make an appointment for an eye exam today.