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Question:
My 20-year-old son has uveitis as well as glaucoma caused by his medications. His IOP is measured at 17 in his right eye and 18 in his left eye. How do we keep the pressure low and continue the meds for the uveitis?   

Answer:
The treatment for steroid-induced glaucoma associated with inflammatory eye diseases, such as uveitis, is to lower the eye pressure initially with glaucoma medications and possibly glaucoma surgery if the eye pressures are high enough and persistent enough to cause damage to the optic nerve. Another means is to stop the use of steroids, but this is often not an option because of the eye inflammation that needs to be treated to prevent vision loss and damage to the eye.

In certain cases, inflammation of the eye can be treated with non-steroidal medications (topical, oral and/or intravenous) depending on the severity of the uveitis and the side effects of treatment, although steroids are the most commonly prescribed medication class used to treat eye inflammation. Baseline optic nerve head and visual field testing is recommended so that your ophthalmologist can determine if steroid-induced glaucoma is causing optic nerve damage or visual field loss. Depending on the test results, your ophthalmologist may recommend more aggressive glaucoma treatments or the use of non-steroidal uveitis treatments.

Answered by: Richard K. Lee, MD, PhD Dr. Richard K. Lee

Categories: Eye Diseases, Glaucoma

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Answered: Jul 03, 2012

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