If you have been watching ‘Race Across the World’ on BBC One, you may have seen contestant Tricia talking about her sight loss experience. In the show, she explains that she has chorioretinopathy caused by uveitis, which is a rare condition that can cause sight loss.
Dr Paramdeep Bilkhu MCOptom, Clinical Adviser at the College says; “Tricia explained in the show that she has chorioretinopathy caused by uveitis. Uveitis is inflammation of the uvea, the coloured part of your eye, which lies beneath the white part of your eye. The most common cause is inflammation elsewhere in the body.
“It is quite likely that what Tricia has is a very specific condition also called birdshot chorioretinopathy. This is very uncommon. The exact cause is unknown but it is thought to be an autoimmune disease. Birdshot often starts with floaters or blurred vision, but these symptoms can indicate many other conditions, so it can be difficult to diagnose at an early point.
The severity of birdshot symptoms varies from person to person but most people will experience flare-ups of inflammation in the eye. Tricia mentioned that she was concerned about having a flare-up while competing on the show.
“One of the reasons why Tricia wanted to do the show was to show people that she is more than sight loss and that people with sight loss can still do things they want to do. It is inspiring watching her and Cathie work their way across Canada.
“If you have any concerns about your vision, make sure you visit your local optometrist.”
Find out more about uveitis
Find out more about birdshot chorioretinopathy