Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Uveitis Anatomy

To better understand uveitis, it helps to understand the anatomy of the eye.

The uvea is a part of the eye that includes the iris (the colored part), the ciliary body, and the choroid.

Structures of the eye include:

  • Bony orbit and muscles: the bone and muscles around the eye that protect it and allow it to move
  • Conjunctiva: the thin, clear membrane that covers the white part of the eye, as well as the inside surface of the eyelids
  • Sclera: the strong, white, outer layer of the globe
  • Cornea: the clear, firm cap that protects the pupil and the iris
  • Pupil: the opening that allows light to pass to the lens
  • Iris: the colored part of the eye that controls the size of the pupil
  • Lens: the clear, soft disc that receives light through the pupil and focuses images on the retina
  • Ciliary body: contains muscles that control the shape of the lens.
  • Vitreous: the clear gel inside the globe that helps to maintain the shape of the eye
  • Choroid: the thin layer that contains blood vessels that supply the parts of the eye
  • Retina: The retina is to the eye what film is to a camera. It is a thin membrane in the back of the eye that contains the rod and cone cells for vision. After receiving light, the retina sends messages to the brain though the optic nerve. This information is processed into images by the brain.

Last Updated: Jan 7, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Uveitis References
  1. Chang JH, McCluskey PJ, Wakefield D. Acute anterior uveitis and HLA-B27. Surv Ophthalmol. 2005 Jul-Aug;50(4):364-88. [15967191]
  2. Dunn JP. Review of immunosuppressive drug therapy in uveitis. Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2004 Aug;15(4):293-8. [15232467]
  3. Jabs DA, Nussenblatt RB, Rosenbaum JT; Standardization of Uveitis Nomenclature (SUN) Working Group. Standardization of uveitis nomenclature for reporting clinical data. Results of the First International Workshop. Am J Ophthalmol. 2005 Sep;140(3):509-16. [16196117]
  4. Murphy CC, Hughes EH, Frost NA, Dick AD. Quality of life and visual function in patients with intermediate uveitis. Br J Ophthalmol. 2005 Sep;89(9):1161-5. [16113373]
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