Common Eye Conditions

  • Age-related macular degeneration: A loss of central vision in both eyes.
  • Amblyopia (lazy eye):One eye sees better than the other, a problem of childhood development. The weaker eye may or may not “wander.” The weaker eye is called the "lazy eye."
  • Astigmatism: A defect that causes an inability to properly focus light onto the retina. Astigmatism causes blurry vision that can be corrected with glasses or contact lenses.
  • Blepharitis: Inflammation of the eyelids near the eyelashes. Blepharitis is a common cause of itching or a feeling of grit in the eyes.
  • Cataract: A clouding of the lens, which hinders the passage of light through the lens.
  • Chalazion: An oil-making gland gets blocked and swells into a bump. Often confused with styes, chalazions are not caused by infections.
  • Conjunctivitis: Also known as "pinkeye,” conjunctivitis is an infection or inflammation of the conjunctiva, the clear layer that covers the front of the eye. It is usually caused by allergies, a virus, or a bacterial infection.
  • Corneal abrasion: A scratch on the clear part of the front of the eye. Pain, light sensitivity, or a feeling of grit in the eye are the usual symptoms.
  • Diabetic retinopathy: High blood sugar damages blood vessels in the eye. Eventually, weakened blood vessels may overgrow the retina or bleed, threatening vision.
  • Diplopia (double vision):Seeing double can be caused by many serious conditions. Diplopia requires immediate medical attention.
  • Dry eye: Either the eyes don’t produce enough tears, or the tears are of poor quality. Dry eye can be caused by medical problems such as lupus, scleroderma, and Sjogren's syndrome.
  • Glaucoma: Increased pressure inside the eye slowly reduces vision. Peripheral vision is lost first, often going undetected for years.
  • Hyperopia (farsightedness): Inability to see near objects clearly. The eye is “too short” for the lens, or certain eye muscles have weakened with age.
  • Myopia (nearsightedness): Inability to see clearly at a distance. The eye is “too long” for the lens, so light isn’t focused properly on the retina.
  • Optic neuritis: The optic nerve becomes inflamed, usually from an overactive immune system. Painful vision loss in one eye typically results.
  • Pterygium: A thickened conjunctival mass usually on the inner part of the eyeball. It may cover a part of the cornea, causing vision problems.
  • Retinal detachment: The retina comes loose from the back of the eye. Trauma and diabetes are common causes of this medical emergency.
  • Retinitis: Inflammation or infection of the retina. Retinitis may be a long-term genetic condition or result from a viral infection.
  • Scotoma: A blind or dark spot in the visual field.
  • Strabismus: The eyes do not point in the same direction. The brain may then favor one eye, causing decreased vision (amblyopia) in the other eye.
  • Stye:Bacteria infect the skin on the edge of the eyelid, creating a tender red bump.
  • Uveitis (iritis):The colored part of the eye becomes inflamed or infected. An overactive immune system, bacteria, or viruses can be responsible.