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Eye Health Glossary

Achromatopsia: A hereditary condition in which people lack certain receptors in their retinas, causing them to be nearly or completely colorblind and to have poor visual acuity.

Alpha-2 agonists: A medication used to treat glaucoma that helps by inhibiting the production and increasing the drainage of aqueous humor, thereby reducing the pressure inside the eye.

Recommended Related to Eye Health

Living Well With Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Amy Atcha, 47, began to suspect there was something wrong when her 72-year-old mother, Judith Arcy, wasn't able to read a menu or see the numbers on her cell phone. After a visit to the ophthalmologist, her mother's diagnosis turned out to be age-related dry macular degeneration (AMD), a chronic, degenerative eye disease that causes central vision loss. AMD "doesn't come on all of a sudden," explains David M. Kleinman, MD, MBA, associate professor of ophthalmology at the Flaum Eye Institute, University...

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Amblyopia: Also known as "lazy eye," amblyopia is a condition that starts in childhood in which vision has not developed properly in one eye or the other. If amblyopia is left untreated, a child's vision will not develop correctly, and as the brain matures, one eye will remain with poor vision.

Aqueous humor: The clear, watery fluid between the lens and the cornea.

Astigmatism: A condition in which blurred vision is caused by the cornea being shaped more like a football than spherical like a basketball. Astigmatism may be compensated for through eyeglasses or contacts, or it can be corrected through refractive surgery.

Beta-blocker: A medication used in the treatment of glaucoma, beta-blocker eye drops help reduce the pressure within the eye by reducing the production of aqueous humor.

Carbonic anhydrase inhibitor: A type of medication used to treat glaucoma. Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors work by reducing the production of aqueous humor, thereby reducing pressure inside the eye.

Choroid: The layer of blood vessels between the retina and the sclera.

Choroiditis: A form of uveitis that causes an inflammation of the layer beneath the retina. It may also be caused by an infection such as tuberculosis.

Conjunctiva: A thin layer of tissue that lines the inside of the eyelids as well as the outer surfaces of the sclera.

Conjunctivitis: Inflammation of the conjunctiva, also called "pinkeye."

Cornea: The clear outer layer of the eye. It covers the iris.

Cryotherapy: A surgical procedure in which abnormal cells are destroyed by freezing them.

Cyclitis: A form of uveitis that causes inflammation of the middle portion of the eye and may affect the muscle that focuses the lens. Cyclitis may develop suddenly and last several months.

Dilation: Expansion of the iris with medicated eye drops.

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