Last reviewed 01/2018

Is inflammation of the anterior portion of the uvea. The term anterior uveitis encompasses both iritis (inflammation of the iris) and iridocyclitis (inflammation of the iris and ciliary body) (1).

It is the most common form of uveitis with an annual incidence of 12 per 100,000 populations.

  • 90% of the cases are over the age of 20 years
  • 50% of the patients are HLA-B27 positive (2)

Acute anterior uveitis must always be considered in any diagnosis of a painful, red eye (other causes of red eye include conjunctivitis, keratitis and acute glaucoma) (1). However, an anterior uveitis may develop insidiously and present more as a white eye as a result of keratitic precipitates. Often, in all forms of anterior uveitis, the pupil has an irregular shape owing to adhesions - synechiae - and may be small. Vision is blurred as the ocular media become obscured by the inflammatory exudate.