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Sunday, January 10, 2016

Multiple sclerosis eye problems: Optic neuritis, nystagmus, and diplopia

Optic neuritis is a condition of blurry or hazy vision which only affects one eye. Eye pain or discomfort may occur in optic neuritis, more so when the eye moves. The cause of optic neuritis isn’t well understood and many cases are deemed idiopathic meaning no identifiable cause is found. In multiple sclerosis optic neuritis is common and is often the first symptom of MS. Infections, too, can lead to optic neuritis.
Common symptoms of optic neuritis are:
  • Vision loss in one eye – this is temporary and can last seven to 10 days
  • Periocular pain – when pain worsens when the eye moves
  • Dyschromatopsia – inability to see colors correctly
  • Photopsias – seeing flashing lights
  • Changes to how the pupil reacts to light
  • Uhthoff’s phenomenon – vision worsens with an increase in body temperature
Risk factors for optic neuritis include:
  • Being female between the ages 18 to 45
  • Having a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis
  • Living in a high latitude

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