Uveitis (Iritis) Explained
Uveitis defined is inflammation of the Uvea’, the middle layer of the eye. This consists of 3 structures the Iris, Ciliary body and choroid. Inflammation occurring in any of these structures is termed Uveitis’. Inflammation of the Iris is termed Iritis.
Iritis is an auto-immune disease with symptoms that can include redness of the eye, light sensitivity, floaters, blurry vision and pain.
Treatment for Iritis may include steroid drops, injections or pills as well as eye drops to dilate the pupil and reduce the pain.
An attack of Iritis may happen unexpectedly and can be linked to a myriad of conditions such as the Auto-Immune Diseases IBS, Arthritis, Lupus, Lyme Disease, Crohns, Colitis to name but a few. However in the majority of cases of Iritis the cause is still unknown and doctors can only test for the above to rule out any significance.
Prevention of Iritis is impossible to pinpoint as no one knows why people have recurrent attacks at particular times. However there is scientific evidence that stress may be a key factor.
The side effects of taking steroid drops can be an increase in pressure in the eye to above normal levels. Your Ophthalmologist will measure the pressure in your eye to discover if it normal. Complications can arise from high pressure such as Glaucoma, Cataracts or new blood vessel formation.
I was diagnosed with Iritis 5 years ago. Arbitrary attacks plagued me, resulting in severe pains around the eyes, photo-sensitivity,’ red eye’, debilitating fatigue and general malaise. My eyes became addicted to the steroid drops that I was prescribed and every time I tried to discontinue the drops another attack would occur.
Frustrated by the lack of support from doctors who could not diagnose an underlying cause I felt I had no choice but to investigate matters myself.
After much research I was lucky enough to find a Naturopath (A person who practices naturopathy, a therapy of natural remedies, who looks at the body as a whole to treat the underlying cause of illness.) that specialised in Iritis; they worked on the premise that most itis’ conditions are linked in some way to a toxic bowel.
I undertook numerous blood tests which diagnosed an imbalanced endocrine system, extremely low cortisol levels and low functioning adrenals. I also endured a full dental clean-up (I had a lot of mercury-based fillings), followed that up with chelation (removal of heavy metals from the body).
Throughout the last couple of years I have consistently cleansed my system of parasites, fungi (Candida), and other harmful pathogens; maintained a healthy low GI diet; consumed numerous herbal tinctures, vitamins and detox products. I have practiced yoga, received massage, Acupuncture and Reiki to combat stress and reduced high-impact exercise.
To conclude, I think the underlying cause to my Iritis was the mercury toxicity, systematically causing acute Candida; an imbalanced hormonal activity, toxified bowel, leaky gut and a tense, stressed body which all contributed to inflammation.
I am no means cured but I do feel vastly improved. I am weaning myself gradually off the steroid drops and feel that I have finally turned a corner from this debilitating disease. Through all my research I now understand how my body works and treat it with the respect it deserves; overcoming my anxiety of Iritis’ I am no longer fearful of the next attack.