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Posterior Uveitis

  • Cynthia M. Johnson, MA
Publication Type:


Posterior Uveitis

(Chorioretinitis; Choroiditis; Retinitis; Retinal Vasculitis; Vitritis)


Posterior uveitis is inflammation of the back part of the uvea—the retina or choroid. The uvea is the middle layer of the eye. Early treatment improves outcomes.

Normal Anatomy of the Eye.

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Posterior uveitis may be caused by:

  • An infection
  • Problems with the immune system
  • Systemic diseases, such as Behcet disease

In some people the cause of posterior uveitis is not known.

Risk Factors

Things that may raise the risk of posterior uveitis are:

  • Having a weakened immune system
  • Exposure to pets, raw or undercooked meat, or contaminated water
  • Having the HLA-A29 gene


Symptoms of posterior uveitis may be:

  • Blurry or loss of vision
  • Seeing floating objects
  • Sensitivity to light or glare
  • Redness in the eye
  • Eye watering
  • Sensing sparks or flashes of light
  • Problems seeing at night
  • Problems seeing color


The doctor will ask about symptoms and past health. A physical exam will be done.

Blood tests will be done to look for signs of infection.

A posterior uveitis diagnosis is based on tests including:

  • A sight test
  • A special scope and lamp that look at the back of the eye
  • A tool that measures the pressure inside the eye


The goal of treatment is to ease the inflammation. Any underlying causes of posterior uveitis will be treated. This may be done with medicine taken by mouth, injection, or placed in the eye. Options are:

  • Corticosteroids to control inflammation
  • Medicines to treat an infection
  • Medicines to suppress the immune system
  • Biological response modifiers to change the immune response


There are no current guidelines to prevent posterior uveitis.





  • Lee JH, Agarwal A, et al. Viral posterior uveitis. Surv Ophthalmol. 2017;62(4):404-445.
  • Posterior uveitis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/posterior-uveitis.
  • Uveitis. National Eye Institute website. Available at: https://nei.nih.gov/health/uveitis/uveitis.


  • Daniel A. Ostrovsky, MD
Last Updated:

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.