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SIGN & SYMPTOMS

Symptoms are the indications that a disease may be affecting the eye and surrounding tissues. A physician uses his or her expertise to sift through the symptoms and ask the appropriate questions to decide on the possible diagnosis. Not all symptoms are of equal severity or urgency, but it is important to seek medical help if they are affecting vision. We present a list of symptoms, which may be helpful to understand what problem may be present. However, only an Eye-MD (Ophthalmologist) can tell you how serious it is and whether treatment is needed.

Important Things to Know

Sight is precious, considered by many to be the most essential of the five senses. Regular eye examinations are important to maintain proper eye health, since some serious eye disorders produce no early warning symptoms. Although prevention is the best defense, eye problems or injuries still can occur suddenly and unexpectedly. And when they do, recognizing their signs and symptoms and knowing what to do is vital to preserving sight.

  • Signs and Symptoms of Eye Problems in Adults.
  • Signs and Symptoms of Eye Problems in Children.
  • Signs and Symptoms of Eye Problems in Infants.
  • Patient Care Services.

Signs and Symptoms of Eye Problems in Adults

  • Sudden decrease or loss of vision (blurring that persists)
  • Partial or complete loss of field of vision
  • Pain in or around the eye
  • Redness especially accompanied by pain in the eye (with or without movement)
  • Extreme light sensitivity
  • Halos (colored circles or halos around lights)
  • >Bulging (protrusion) of the eye or swelling of eye tissues
  • Flashes or streaks of light
  • Double vision
  • Sudden crossed, turned or "wandering" eye
  • Limitation of eye movement
  • Discharge, crusting or excessive tearing; eyelids stuck together, especially upon awakening
  • Irregularly-shaped pupil
  • Blood inside the front of the eye (on the colored part) or white of the eye

Signs and Symptoms of Eye Problems in Adults

For children, eyesight is important because good vision is often related to learning. As with adults, regular eye examinations are important to maintain proper eye health, since some serious eye disorders produce no early warning symptoms.

Any of the following signs or symptoms may be indicative of a number of serious eye problems. If your child experiences any of the following, see an ophthalmologist (Eye M.D.) as soon as possible:

  • Pain in or around the eye
  • One eye turns in toward the nose or wanders out toward the ear, either constantly or occasionally, eyes that do not appear to look in the same direction
  • Child tilts or turns head when looking intently
  • One eye closes occasionally, especially when the child is outside
  • Eyes shake or vibrate
  • Child covers one eye to look at things
  • Squints or squeezes eyes nearly closed to see
  • Cannot identify things across the room or farther away
  • Frequent rubbing of eye
  • Discharge from eyes (stuck together in the morning)
  • Droopy eyelids
  • A white pupil in either or both eyes
  • Eyes tearing or wet-looking, when not crying
  • Any swelling or lump in or around the eyes or eyelids
  • Any difference in size, shape or color of any part of the eye (i.e. pupil) or eyelids
  • Redness of the eye
  • Functionally one-eyed