I've read several posts on this topic but nothing really recent. I've been dealing with a red/itchy/watery/sore eye for almost 3 months. I only have this problem in my left eye. At first doc visit, I was first diagnosed with pink eye, given 4 different drops, tried allergy meds, and a topical ointment. It seems to go into "remission" for a couple weeks at a time and then comes back. Most recently, it came back full force where the white of my eye was practically red, and when I woke up, it was crusted over. Went back to eye doc and he said it was an inflammation of the eye, aka Uveitis. Said it is auto-immune and asked if I had arthritis anywhere (I have it in one knee). From what I read, there is a connection. Was prescribed steriod eye drops, 4 x/day for a week, then 2x/day for another week. My questions are: is this a lifelong problem? Will the steriod drops cure it? Is there any multi-vitamin or supplement I can take to help?
The connection is with rheumatoid arthritis rather than osteoarthritis. Patients with recurring uveitis are tested for MS as well.
The underlying cause is what determines whether it will keep recurring. I used to know the percentage rates...I think 40% of people will have only the one bout, the rest get repeats. There doesn't seem to be much you can do to prevent it, although periods of stress seem to cause flare ups. The steroids don't cure the condition, just relieve the inflammation and I think there might be some controversy now about whether steroids are an effective treatment.
A healthy immune system is your best protection, so anything you can do to strengthen that would help. Maybe you'll be one of the lucky ones and this will be a one-time occurrence.
Thank you Keela for your reply I hope it truly is just a one-time occurrence. In your opinion, do you think I should be checked for MS if it occurs again? Also, I do have that type of arthritis in both knees. What exactly is the connection?
If you have recurrences, your doctor will want to test for MS.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an auto-immune disease (as is MS). Inflammation of the eyeball is an immune reaction. The connection is: something wrong with the immune system that makes it attack the body.
Unfortunately, it often is. But, as I said some people have one or two attacks and that's it. It's been quite awhile since I've read a uveitis forum, so I'm not positive about this, but I think there are some people who have recurring flare-ups that are never diagnosed with an underlying condition.
Do some searching for a uveitis forum. It will be much more informative.