(Inflammation of Optic Nerve)
|The Optic Nerve|
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An attack on the optic nerve by a viral infection or by the body's own immune system—This may be associated with autoimmune disorders, such as:
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Neuromyelitis optica (NMO, Devic’s disease)
- Exposure to toxic substances. This can be associated with optic neuropathy (injury to the optic nerve).
- Some medicines
- Personal or family history of multiple sclerosis or other autoimmune disorders—Autoimmune diseases are more common in women of child-bearing age.
- Previous history of optic neuritis
- Previous history of transverse myelitis (inflammation of the spinal cord)
- Sudden decrease in vision—blurred, dark, or dim vision, or loss of vision in the center of, part of, or all of the visual field. In mild cases, it may look like “the lights are turned down.”
- Abnormal color vision (dull and faded colors)
- Pain in or around the eye (often made worse with eye movement)
- Tests of color vision, side vision, visual acuity, and the reaction of the pupil to light
- Dilated eye examination
- Visual evoked potential test
- Optical coherence tomography (OCT)
- Blood tests
- Lumbar puncture
- Steroid medicine to reduce swelling of the optic nerve
- Medicine to treat the cause of optic neuritis
American Academy of Opthalmology http://www.aao.org/
North American Neuro-Ophthalmology Society http://www.nanosweb.org/
Canadian Association of Optometrists http://www.opto.ca/
Canadian Ophthalmological Society http://www.eyesite.ca/
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Bianchi Marzoli S, Martinelli V. Optic neuritis: differential diagnosis. Neurol Sci . 2001;22(Suppl 2):S52-S54.
Boomer JA, Siatkowski RM. Optic neuritis in adults and children. Semin Ophthalmol . 2003;18:174-180.
Chan JW. Optic neuritis in multiple sclerosis. Ocul Immunol Inflamm . 2002;10:161-186.
Hickman SJ, Dalton CM, Miller DH, Plant GT. Management of acute optic neuritis. Lancet . 2002;360:1953-1962.
Lis SY, Birnbaum AD, Goldstein DA. Optic neuritis associated with adalimumab in the treatment of uveitis. Ocul Immunol Inflamm . 2010;18(6):475-481.
Optic neuritis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed . Updated March 30, 2011. Accessed November 27, 2012.
Romero RS, Gutierrez Y, Wang E, Reder AT, Bhatti MT, Bernard JT, Javed A. Homonymous hemimacular thinning: a unique presentation of optic tract thinning in neuromyelitis optica. J Neuroophthalmal . 2012;32(2):150-3.
Volpe NJ. The optic neuritis treatment trial: a definitive answer and profound impact with unexpected results. Arch Ophthalmol . 2008;126(7):996-999.
- Reviewer: Rimas Lukas, MD
- Review Date: 03/2013 -
- Update Date: 03/15/2013 -