Xerophthalmia: Blinking Fewer Eyelids Can Cause Dangerous Disease

Xerophthalmia is regarded as a progressive eye disease that is significantly caused due to lack of vitamin A. So, with deficit vitamin A, it can dry out the patients’ eyes as well as the tear ducts. And if left untreated, it can seriously damage the cornea or even develop into night blindness.

Sometimes, the damage might transform into white spots on the patient’s eyes. And at worst, it can take the form of ulcers on the cornea. This disease is most commonly seen in underdeveloped countries, where people are diagnosed with nutrient deficiencies. The condition of Xerophthalmia can typically be reversed and treated with the help of vitamin A therapy.

Xerophthalmia: What are the Symptoms?

The symptoms of Xerophthalmia typically start out mild. But if the condition of vitamin A deficiency is left untreated, then it will eventually worsen. And whenever you have this condition, the thin lining of your eyeball, known as the conjunctiva, considerably dries out. Further, it starts thickening and then begins to wrinkle up.

This condition of drying out and wrinkling causes a plethora of symptoms. You must note that the probable earliest symptom is night blindness. It is nothing but the inability to see anything in the dim light.

While Xerophthalmia progresses, another typical thing called lesions forms on the cornea. This is a mere tissue deposit that is also known as bitot spots. In some cases, patients can also get diagnosed with corneal ulcers. And if this condition is still not treated, then it becomes even worse.

Usually, in the last stage, a significant part of the whole cornea liquifies. And since the condition is not treated at the right time, it eventually leads to blindness. Sadly, this medical condition reaches such an extent that there is absolutely no cure to it.

Xerophthalmia: What are the Causes?

The condition of Xerophthalmia is significantly caused due to the deficiency of vitamin A. It is more or less common in those people who suffer from nutritional deficiency.

Our body doesn’t have the expertise to produce vitamin A on their own, which is why it is imperative to include highly nutritious food in your regular diet. You should remember that vitamin A is immensely crucial for keeping your vision intact. Besides, it is a prominent protein element capable of absorbing light within the receptors of your retina.

Vitamin A also plays a pivotal role in proper functioning and maintaining your lungs, heart, kidneys, and other organs. This severe condition of the conjunctiva drying out is rarely seen in developed countries. But sometimes, it is highly prevalent in some countries with limited animal product access.

Xerophthalmia: Who is at Greater Risk?

Wherever poverty and a lack of adequate diet, the risk of Xerophthalmia is considerably higher. Basically, those who entirely refrain from including animal products in their diet are at greater risk. So, in that regard, children and infants are also at a greater risk. You should note that the younger the child is, the more influential the condition is.

Vitamin A is a crucial nutrient for the growth and development of children. But a Vitamin A deficiency affects the ability to combat common childhood infections.

To Conclude

Supplementation of Vitamin A is regarded as the immediate treatment for Xerophthalmia. It can be consumed orally or injected into the blood. The dose of vitamin A therapy varies according to age and health condition. In fact, it can quickly reverse the symptoms of Xerophthalmia, therefore protecting the patient.

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