What Is Aniridia?

Aniridia is a rare genetic condition characterized by the incomplete development of the iris, the colored part of the eye that controls the size of the pupil. People with aniridia usually have a partially formed or absent iris. It is often associated with various other eye conditions, including cataracts, glaucoma, and corneal problems, and can lead to vision impairment or blindness.

Symptoms of Aniridia:

Symptoms and related conditions can vary among individuals but may include:

  • Reduced visual acuity
  • Sensitivity to light (photophobia) due to the lack of iris to regulate light entering the eye
  • Nystagmus, which is involuntary eye movement
  • Development of cataracts or glaucoma
  • Underdeveloped optic nerve
  • Corneal degeneration over time

Treatment for Aniridia:

There is no cure for aniridia, but treatments focus on managing associated conditions and symptoms:

  • Protective Eyewear: To reduce light sensitivity and protect the eyes.
  • Medications: To manage conditions like glaucoma.
  • Surgical Options: Including cataract removal or corneal transplant.
  • Low Vision Aids: To optimize remaining vision.

Prevention of Aniridia:

As aniridia is primarily a genetic disorder, there is no known prevention. Genetic counseling may be beneficial for those with a family history of the condition. Regular eye examinations are crucial for early detection and management of related eye conditions.

To learn more about aniridia, its causes, diagnosis, and surgical options, visit your optometrist.

Please note that this information is provided for informational purposes only and should not substitute professional medical advice. If you suspect you have aniridia or any eye-related concerns, it is important to consult with an eye care professional for a proper evaluation and personalized recommendations.