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Episcleritis and Scleritis

Definition Of
Episcleritis and Scleritis

Episcleritis is an inflammation of the Episcleral, which is the thin layer of tissue between the conjunctiva and the sclera (white part of the eye). It is a relatively mild condition that usually resolves on its own within a few weeks.

Scleritis is a more severe and potentially serious inflammation of the sclera. It can cause significant eye pain, redness, and vision problems. Scleritis is often associated with underlying autoimmune diseases and requires medical treatment.

Risk Factors For
Episcleritis and Scleritis

Symptoms of Episcleritis

Eye redness

The affected eye may appear red or pink due to inflammation in the episclera, which is the thin layer of tissue between the white of the eye (sclera) and the clear outer covering (conjunctiva).

Some individuals may experience mild to moderate pain or discomfort in the affected eye. The pain is typically described as a dull ache or irritation.

 Episcleritis can cause excessive tearing or watery eyes.

Episcleritis can make the eye more sensitive to light, causing discomfort in bright environments.

Some people may feel as if there is a foreign object, such as sand or grit, in their eye.

 Episcleritis typically does not affect vision, and individuals usually maintain normal visual acuity.

Symptoms of Scleritis

Severe eye redness

Scleritis causes intense redness in the eye, often extending beyond the area affected by episcleritis. The redness may be described as a deep purple or bluish hue.

Scleritis is known for causing severe, throbbing, or deep eye pain that can be constant or intermittent. The pain may worsen with eye movement or pressure.

 Scleritis can affect vision, causing blurred vision or a decrease in visual acuity.

Individuals with scleritis may experience extreme sensitivity to light, leading to discomfort in brightly lit environments.

 Similar to episcleritis, scleritis can also cause excessive tearing or watery eyes.

Scleritis can be associated with headaches, particularly around the affected eye.

It is important to note that while these factors are commonly associated with episcleritis and scleritis, they may not be present in all cases. A thorough examination by an eye care professional is necessary to determine the underlying cause and appropriate treatment for these conditions.

Treatment Types

Anti-inflammatory Medications

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or corticosteroids may be prescribed to reduce inflammation and alleviate symptoms.

In severe or recurrent cases, medications that suppress the immune system may be necessary to control inflammation.

Lubricating eye drops or ointments can provide relief from dryness and irritation associated with episcleritis and scleritis.

Treating any underlying systemic conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis or vasculitis, is crucial to effectively manage scleritis.

Regular monitoring and follow-up appointments with your eye care specialist are important to ensure the condition is properly managed and any changes are addressed promptly.

Episcleritis and Scleritis are two conditions characterized by inflammation of the eye’s outer layer. Understanding these conditions, their symptoms, and available treatment options is essential for maintaining ocular health. If you are experiencing symptoms of eye inflammation, our experienced team is here to provide expert care and tailored treatment solutions.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Episcleritis?

 Episcleritis is an inflammation of the Episcleral, which is the thin layer of tissue between the conjunctiva and the sclera (white part of the eye). It is a relatively mild condition that usually resolves on its own within a few weeks.

Scleritis is a more severe and potentially serious inflammation of the sclera. It can cause significant eye pain, redness, and vision problems. Scleritis is often associated with underlying autoimmune diseases and requires medical treatment.

Common symptoms of episcleritis include redness of the eye, mild discomfort or irritation, and a feeling of grittiness. It typically affects only one eye and does not usually cause vision problems.

 Scleritis symptoms may include severe eye pain, redness and swelling of the eye, sensitivity to light, blurry vision, and tearing. The pain associated with scleritis can be deep and throbbing, often worse at night.

The exact cause of episcleritis and scleritis is unknown, but they are believed to be related to an abnormal immune response. Episcleritis is often associated with certain systemic conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, while scleritis is commonly associated with autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and vasculitis.

 Diagnosis is typically made through a comprehensive eye examination, including a thorough medical history and evaluation of symptoms. Additional tests, such as blood tests or a biopsy of the affected tissue, may be performed to identify any underlying conditions.

Episcleritis usually resolves on its own and may only require symptomatic relief, such as using artificial tears or applying cold compresses. Scleritis, on the other hand, often requires medical treatment with anti-inflammatory medications, such as corticosteroids or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). In some cases, immunosuppressive drugs may be prescribed to manage underlying autoimmune conditions.

While episcleritis typically does not cause permanent damage, scleritis can lead to complications and potential vision loss if left untreated. It is important to seek medical attention if you suspect you have scleritis to prevent any long-term consequences.