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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

Your Eyes and Iritis

The iris is a circular, pigmented membrane that provides the eye its color and the opening in the center is the pupil of the eye. The iris is made up of muscular fibers that control the amount of light entering the pupil so that you can see clearly. The iris accomplishes this task by making the pupil smaller in bright light and larger in dim light. In some people, the iris can become inflamed. This is termed iritis.

Read the Your Eyes and Iritis article > >

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. 

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 pupil with medicated eye drops.

Enucleation: A procedure in which the eye is removed.

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