Eye Glossary

  • Adie's Pupil - a pupil that does not react normally to bright light due to impaired nerve function; usually does not interfere substantially with vision
  • Amaurosis Fugax - temporary loss of vision in one eye; may be a sign of a transient ischemic attack (TIA) or an impending stroke
  • Amblyopia - the inability of an eye to see normally due to lack of input from the eye to the brain during childhood; also termed "lazy eye"
  • Aphakia - the absence of the eye's natural lens, usually after cataract surgery
  • Arcus Senilis - a hazy ring at the edge of the cornea where the iris meets the white of the eye; does not impair vision
 
  • Bell's Palsy - paralysis of the muscles on one side of the face due to nerve damage; usually temporary, but can interfere with blinking and protection of the eye
  • Blepharitis - inflammation of the eyelid; can cause irritation, discharge and even blurred vision
 
  • Chalazion - a bump in the eyelid caused by a clogged oil gland; may require surgical removal
  • Conjunctivitis - inflammation or infection of the conjunctiva, the mucous membrane covering the white of the eye
  • Corneal Erosion - spontaneous loss of a part of the surface "skin" of the eye-causes pain, light sensitivity and occasionally blurriness, and often occurs on awakening
  • Corneal Oedema - swelling of the cornea, often causing blurred vision
  • Corneal Ulcer - a localised inflammation or infection of the cornea extending beneath the surface layer-must be treated immediately to prevent permanent damage
  • Central Retinal Artery Occlusion - blockage of the main blood supply to the eye often; causes blindness
  • Central Retinal Vein Occlusion - blockage of the main vein transporting blood away from the retina; causes haemorrhage in the retina and usually results in permanent vision impairment
  • Central Serous Retinopathy - spontaneous leakage of fluid into the retina, often in young, healthy people - cause is unknown
 
  • Dacryocystitis - infection in the tear sac adjacent to the nose-causes pain, swelling, tenderness and tearing
  • Dermatochalasis - excess or baggy skin on the eyelids, usually from loss of elastic tissue in the skin
  • Diplopia - double vision; usually caused by misaligned eyes
  • Drusen - discoloured spots in the retina - can be an early sign of macular degeneration
 
  • Ectropion - loosening of the eyelid causing it to turn outward, away from the eye
  • Entropion - "collapsing" of the eyelid, causing the edge of the lid to turn inward, toward the eye-often results in discomfort due to eyelashes rubbing against the eye
  • Epiretinal Membrane - wrinkling of the surface of the retina; can cause blurriness or distortion in vision - severe cases can be treated with surgical removal
  • Esotropia - having an eye that turns inward
  • Exophthalmos - bulging forward of the eyes, sometimes caused by thyroid problems
  • Exotropia - having an eye that turns outward
 
  • Fuchs' Dystrophy - a deterioration of the cells in the cornea that maintain the cornea's clarity; often has no visual effect but may require a corneal transplant if severe
 
  • Hemianopia - the loss of one half of the visual field (left or right); usually affects both eyes and is often caused by brain injury, especially stroke
  • Hyphema - bleeding inside the eye, often due to an injury
  • Herpes Simplex - a cause of serious corneal infection - the same virus that causes cold sores
  • Herpes Zoster - "shingles" - the same virus that causes chicken pox, which can return and affect many areas of the body, including the eye
 
  • Iritis - inflammation inside the eye, primarily in the front of the eye - causes redness, pain, blurred vision and sensitivity to light in most cases
 
  • Keratitis - inflammation in the cornea-may cause scratchiness, pain, blurred vision and light sensitivity
  • Keratoconus - a progressive change in the shape of the cornea, creating a "cone" - like configuration and causing blurred vision - severe cases may require a corneal transplant
  • Macular Oedema - swelling in the centre of the retina caused by fluid leakage; results in blurred vision and visual distortion
 
  • Neovascularisation - growth of new abnormal blood vessels - can occur at several locations in the eye
  • Nystagmus - oscillating movements of the eye
 
  • Ocular Migraine - a visual disturbance usually including an arc of zigzag light and blurry vision - disappears spontaneously and does not usually include a headache
  • Optic Neuritis - inflammation of the optic nerve, resulting in blurred vision or other visual disturbances - can be caused by multiple sclerosis
 
  • Papilledema - swelling of the optic nerve where it enters the eye - can be caused by increased fluid pressure around the brain
  • Pinguecula - a thickening of the white of the eye; often caused by chronic irritation
  • Pterygium - growth of tissue from the white of the eye over the cornea - may interfere with vision if it nears the centre of the cornea
  • Ptosis - droopiness of the eyelid - may result from nerve or muscle damage, and sometimes requires surgical correction
 
  • Retinal Detachment - separation of the retina from its normal location covering the inner surface of the back portion of the eye
  • Rubeosis - growth of abnormal blood vessels on the iris
 
  • Scotoma - a blind spot
  • Strabismus (Squint)- any misalignment of the eye
  • Stye - an acute inflammation of a gland at the base of an eyelash, caused by bacterial infection.
 
  • Trichiasis - abnormal eyelash growth, usually pointing toward the eye
 
  • Uveitis - inflammation of the interior of the eye
 
  • Vitreous Detachment - separation of the vitreous gel from the back of the eye - a common occurrence which can result in sudden floaters and occasionally causes a tear in the retina
 

Credibility Logos

  • American Academy Of Ophthalmology
  • American Society of Retina Specialists
  • ASCRS
  • National Eye Institute
  • Glaucoma Australia
  • Macular Degeneration Foundation