Prevent Blindness to Provide Educational Information, Raise Awareness of Various Inflammatory Eye Diseases to Promote Early Detection and Treatment to Help Save Sight
Prevent Blindness, the nation’s leading eye health and safety nonprofit organization, has declared Sept. 26 – Oct. 2, 2022, as the second annual Inflammatory Eye Disease (IED) Awareness Week. IED includes a range of conditions associated with eye inflammation. Inflammation is the body’s response to injury, infection, or irritation. Most cases of eye inflammation can be successfully treated. However, in rare cases there can be a serious disease present, which is a threat to the eyesight.
Prevent Blindness offers a dedicated webpage providing detailed information on IED, downloadable fact sheets in English and Spanish, and resources for eye care. New this year is a Spanish version of the Prevent Blindness Keratitis fact sheet. Social media messages and graphics will be posted on the Prevent Blindness social media channels throughout the week, with professionals and the public encouraged to share and post as well. IED Awareness Week is supported by a grant from Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals.
Prevent Blindness also offers the “Inflammatory Eye Disease” episode of the Focus on Eye Health Expert Series, featuring Dr. Ann-Marie Lobo of the Illinois Eye and Ear Infirmary, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Co-Director, Uveitis Service, University of Illinois College of Medicine, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences. Her area of expertise is diagnosis and treatment of patients with ocular inflammatory and infectious diseases. Also included is patient Addison Schwaller, Emergency Medicine Physician Assistant at Logansport Memorial Hospital in Logansport, Ind.
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, most chronic inflammation is caused by autoimmune disease. This is when the body’s immune system cannot tell the difference between healthy cells and threatening germs, like viruses or bacteria. The body then attacks its own healthy tissues. Different types of IED include Uveitis, Keratitis, Conjunctivitis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and Thyroid Eye Disease. As with many types of eye disease, early detection and treatment can significantly reduce the risk of vision loss.
“Inflammatory Eye Disease is a term that encompasses a wide variety of diseases and symptoms,” said Jeff Todd, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness. “By educating the public on these conditions and the steps that can be taken to relieve symptoms and lower the potential for significant vision loss we hope to empower patients to work with their healthcare providers, including eyecare professionals, to save sight.”
More information on inflammatory eye disease.