Isaiah Austin’s diagnosis of Marfan syndrome appears to have ended his prospects for a career in professional basketball, and will have lifelong effects on his health. The syndrome, which can affect connective tissue throughout the body, often first exhibits symptoms in the eyes.

Marfan syndrome: a rare genetic disorder

While a person must be born with Marfan syndrome, its symptoms often develop and are diagnosed later in life. Austin, formerly a center for Baylor University, had already overcome losing the sight in his right eye several years ago when he had a retinal detachment that couldn't be surgically corrected. While his previous retinal detachment has not been specifically linked to Marfan syndrome, this and other eye problems are common symptoms of the disorder.

Find out how Marfan Syndrome affects eyes and vision.

Learn about Marfan syndrome health and research.


Many diseases and conditions that affect the eyes have a genetic component or pre-disposition based on family history. The American Academy of Ophthalmology encourages all families to talk openly and often about any health conditions they have.

Follow Isaiah Austin’s story.

There is no replacement for the experience and expertise of your ophthalmologist – an Eye M.D. If you have questions or concerns about your eye health, talk to your doctor.

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Written by Dan Gudgel on

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