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Eye and Vision Care

Blue Ring Around the Iris?

04/09/2010

Question:

I want to know if there is any significance healthwise about a blue ring around my iris as I get older? I am 64 and it has been there for a few years. Someone told me that it was Wilson`s Disease, but that sounds bad and I am not having those symptoms. Thanks

Answer:

Depending on your age or complexion, it could be a ring of cholesterol deposits in the surface tissue (cornea) called arcus senilis. The presentation can be different in different eyes. This occurs in people over the age of 40 normally without concern, but it can occur prematurely in people with high cholesterol levels. Races with a lot of pigmentation in skin, hair, and eyes (i.e., dark brown iris) can sometimes have a blue ring between the cornea and iris because of the stark difference in color between the 2 structures.

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Response by:

Andrew J Toole, OD, PhD, FAAO
Clinical Assistant Professor of Optometry
College of Optometry
The Ohio State University