RA certainly can be associated with visual problems but a detatched retina is not typical. Inflammatory conditions involving the front part of the eye (episcleritis and iritis) are not uncommon in RA and in other forms of inflammatory arthritis. Dry eyes (Sjogren’s) is frequently seen and can be severe in RA. Some medications such as hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil) and, chloroquine are sometimes also associated with visual complaints It is important to be followed by an ophthalmologist. We generally recommend at least once a year. Also she should be seen by a rheumatologist who can assist in her management sorting out which of her joint complaints may be RA and what may be degenerative disease.
About Clifton Bingham, III, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
Director - Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center