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Optic neuritis

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Optic neuritis is inflammation of the optic nerve, the nerve that carries the visual signal from the eye to the brain.[1][2] The condition may cause sudden, reduced vision in the affected eye(s). While the cause of optic neuritis is unknown, it has been associated with autoimmune diseases, infections, multiple sclerosis, drug toxicity and deficiency of vitamin B-12. Vision often returns to normal within 2-3 weeks without treatment. In some cases, corticosteroids are given to speed recovery. If known, the underlying cause should be treated.[1]
Last updated: 1/11/2011


  1. Hoch DB. Optic neuritis. MedlinePlus. 2009; Accessed 1/11/2011.
  2. Optic Neuritis. American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (AAPOS). 2011; Accessed 1/11/2011.
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Basic Information

  • MedlinePlus was designed by the National Library of Medicine to help you research your health questions, and it provides more information about this topic.
  • The Merck Manuals Online Medical Library provides information on this condition. Click on the link to view the information.
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In Depth Information

  • eMedicine has 3 articles on this topic from the perspective of Radiology, Childhood Ophthalmology and Adult Ophthalmology. You may need to register to view the information online, but registration is free. Click on the links above to view the articles from this medical reference Web site.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Optic neuritis. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.