Why Do I Have Unusual Pupils?

The most noticeable part of our face is our eyes. We can see how important eye contact is in our daily conversations. It also plays a great role in human connection and relationships. We can easily observe if someone has a unique or vivid feature in their eyes. We all know how mesmerizing bright blue irises can be.

The color of the iris is what sets one pair of eyes from another. It is rare to notice anything different about another person’s pupil. A condition known to be coloboma is an optical condition that results in cat-like pupils or keyhole-shaped from birth. These conditions affect the lens, iris, retina, or optic nerve. It can also affect the eyelids but the most commonly affected part is the eye itself.

Coloboma is a condition where a part of the tissue is missing from the eye or eyelid. If you have a coloboma in the eyelid, a part of your eyelid can be absent. If you have coloboma in the iris, you have an irregular shape of pupils. The condition is derived from the Greek word “ko” which means defect. A coloboma is a condition that is developed in the womb but it is a condition that lasts for the entire life.

It is initially believed to be a rare condition but studies do not agree. They suppose that there could be numerous people who have not been diagnosed. The collection of studies showed that coloboma can affect 0.5 to 2.2 people out of every 10,000 people.

closeup of pupil

How Does Coloboma Develop?

The eyes of the baby begin to develop during the fourth week of pregnancy. The eyes grow from the brain which starts as simple stalks. The major portion of these stalks becomes the optic nerve and the end becomes the eye. At five weeks, the optical fissure should close. If it does not completely close, it results in coloboma of the eye.

It is possible to have coloboma of the optic nerve or retina because they can have more than one area affected. Coloboma happens unexpectedly with no real origin. In some cases, coloboma is a part of another condition including fetal alcohol syndrome or CHARGE syndrome.

closeup of two different eye colors

Effect of Coloboma in Vision

An individual with coloboma may not experience any issues with eyes or vision at all. If you have a coloboma of the retina or optic nerve, that is the time where it can impair a person’s vision. The severity of the impairment can be mild to serious. You can also be sensitive to light as a result of coloboma. The coloboma can cause other eye conditions later such as cataracts, microphthalmia, glaucoma, or retinal detachment.

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