Symptoms and Signs of Iritis

Medical Author:
Medically Reviewed on 8/23/2021

Doctor's Notes on Iritis

Iritis is inflammation of iris, the circular-colored portion in the front area of the eye. Signs and symptoms of iritis often develop quickly. They include eye pain (usually only one eye), increased severity of pain when the eye is exposed to bright light, reddish sclera, blurry vision, small or irregularly shaped pupil, and/or increased tear production. Known causes of iritis are blunt trauma to the eye and infections (for example, Lyme disease, herpes, toxoplasmosis, syphilis, and tuberculosis [TB]). Iritis has been associated with irritable bowel disorder (IBD), sarcoidosis, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, and other systemic diseases. Often, no cause or associated cause is found.

What Is the Treatment for Iritis?

Iritis treatment is treated by first diagnosing the underlying cause, treating it, and then treating iritis, sometimes at the same time. For example, treat infections or systemic diseases associated with iritis (see above). The usual treatment of iritis consists of

  • steroid eyedrops and
  • dilating eyedrops.
  • For more serious symptoms and signs or for no relief from eyedrops, oral steroids may be used.

Your doctor may refer you to an eye doctor.


Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.