Awareness is key when it comes to maintaining your eye health. Many people do not realize that shingles can cause eye damage. Often the itchy, bloodshot condition that begins is thought to be allergies or some other irritation, but later, if left untreated, can develop into actual lesions on the eye. Anti-viral medications are required to prevent vision loss and to treat the condition as quickly as possible. Less than a quarter of people with shingles virus will see it spread to the face or eyes. When it does, it is commonly seen on the upper eyelid, forehead, or one side of the face. Swelling on the eyelid and conjunctivitis is related to having shingles in the eye itself.
So then, what is the danger of vision loss if shingles happens to spread to the eyes themselves? This is the condition called herpes zoster ophthalmicus which, unfortunately, can cause scarring which leads to vision loss. The virus can affect the front, back, and even the inside of the eye, so it is important for patients to come in right away for an eye exam and make sure to watch for symptoms. If a rash or irritation appears anywhere near the face and eyes, it is always better to be safe than sorry and come in and visit your Eye Michigan doctor immediately. Contact Us.