14 Autoimmune Disorders that Affect the Eyes

14 Autoimmune Disorders that Affect the Eyes

Previously, I wrote three blog posts about all of these eye disorders. Today I decided to put them in an organized list.


Sjogren’s syndrome destroys glands responsible for lubricating eyes and other parts of the body.

Did you know that it’s estimated that 1 in 10 dry eye patients also have Sjogren’s Syndrome; and it can take up to four years or longer from onset of the disease to get an accurate diagnosis.

Other eye symptoms that can occur with Sjogren’s Syndrome include blurred vision, a gritty or burning sensation and light sensitivity.

Read more. 


“About 30 to 40 percent of people with ankylosing spondylitis get uveitis at some time,” says Dr. Proctor.

Researchers have found certain genes common in both ankylosing spondylitis and uveitis. Even though other diseases can also cause uveitis and iritis, about 50 percent of all Caucasians with this type of eye inflammation have the HLA-B27 gene.

Read more. 


The eyes may be affected through a separate, yet related disease called Graves’ Ophthalmopathy. In Graves’ Ophthalmopathy, the immune system targets the area surrounding eyes and may cause:

  • Bulging eyes (Graves’ ophthalmopathy)
  • Bulging eyes (exophthalmos)
  • Gritty sensation in the eyes
  • Pressure or pain in the eyes
  • Puffy or retracted eyelids
  • Reddened or inflamed eyes
  • Light sensitivity
  • Double vision
  • Vision loss

Read more. 

14 Autoimmune Disorders that Affect the EyesBEHCET DISEASE

The main ocular involvement in Behçet’s disease is where the inflammatory process spreads inside the eye, causing uveitis. This may affect the front part of the eye causing symptoms of redness, pain and sensitivity to light. … Unfortunately, the usual scenario is for the inflammation to spread to the back of the eye.

Read more. 


Systemic lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that can affect any part of the body, including the eyes. Lupus most often affects the heart, joints, skin, lungs, blood vessels, kidneys and central nervous system (CNS).

Read more. 

Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

Vision problems are pretty common for people with MS. The symptoms usually come and go on their own.


  • Vision Loss – Optic Neuritis
  • Double Vision
  • Uncontrollable Eye Movements

Read more.


People with Psoriasis can develop Uveitis. For patients with psoriatic arthritis, the risk is about 7 percent (or 70 people per 1,000) will develop uveitis. One study found that as many as 17 percent of children with psoriatic arthritis will get uveitis.

Read more. 


Reactive arthritis is a type of arthritis that occurs due to an infection. Arthritis is when joints become inflamed and painful. Reactive arthritis is not contagious. It’s also known as Reiter’s Syndrome. It mostly affects men ages 20 to 50. Symptoms can last from 3 to 12 months.

Read more.


Dry eyes can also be a symptom of Sjogren’s syndrome — an autoimmune disorder that’s often associated with rheumatoid arthritis. More rarely, rheumatoid arthritis can cause inflammation in the white part (sclera) of your eyes, which can result in redness and pain.

Read more.


Although thyroid eye disorders occur at any age, the average age at onset is 45 years. There are three times as many females with thyroid eye disorders.  Graves’ disease is an autoimmune disease, and can be more likely to occur in patients with other autoimmune diseases (ex. Type I Diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis) Thyroid eye disease is mainly associated with hyperthyroidism from Graves’ disease, although it does sometimes occur in patients who are hypothyroid or euthyroid.

Read more. 


Diabetic eye disease is a group of eye conditions that can affect people with diabetes.

  • Diabetic retinopathy.
  • Diabetic macular edema (DME).
  • Cataracts
  • Glaucoma

Read more.


Extraintestinal manifestations of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are conditions associated with IBD that do not directly involve the intestinal tract.

Read more.


Eye manifestations are estimated to affect approximately 10 percent of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients.

Read more. 


Symptoms may include:

  • redness
  • pain
  • sensitivity to light
  • headaches
  • floating spots in the field of vision (floaters)
  • diminished vision
  • and/or a whitish patch towards the lower portion of the iris

Read more. 


5 thoughts on “14 Autoimmune Disorders that Affect the Eyes

  1. Debbie Foreman says:

    This is very interesting facts, but I have a autoimmune disorder that affects my eyes and vision and I can never find anything on it. It is called Eales disease.

    Liked by 1 person

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