ZocdocAnswersDoes Alzheimer's cause iris spots?

Question

Does Alzheimer's cause iris spots?

My mother, age 82, has small black spots on her iris. Is it possible that these are caused by her Alzheimer's disease? I can accept it if it's the AD, but I definitely want to deal with it if she has an eye disease that should be addressed.

Answer

Alzheimer's disease is a degenerative brain condition which is the leading cause of dementia in the world. The condition leads to progressive loss of cognitive function coupled with worsening social impairment. There is no cure for Alzheimer's disease. Alzheimer's disease has many symptoms, but it is not associated with pigmentation changes in the iris of the eye. The most common causes of changes in the pigmentation of the iris include normal aging of the iris, which can lead to irregularities and spots in the pigments, and several medications, including multiple types of eye drops, which can darken the pigment there. If these changes persist or worsen you may want to have them evaluated by an eye doctor, but you can be assured that they are not related to the Alzheimer's. As always the diagnosis and the management of your mother's particular concerns will require a physical examination by her personal physician. Setting up an office visit with her primary care doctor might be advised.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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