Beth R. Friedland M.D. at Park Ophthalmology spends a lot of time staring into people’s eyes. The human eye tells a wide variety of stories to a skilled Ophthalmologist. The color of the iris is not something eye doctors usually check, but July 12th, 2013 is Different Colored Eyes Day. This national observance recognizes a condition called Heterochromia. Max Scherzer, current 13-0 as a Detroit Tiger Starting Pitcher and an A.L. All Star this season, has this very uncommon condition seldom found in humans.
About Eye Color
Eye color is determined by the amount and distribution of melanin in the iris. That’s why babies tend to have blue eyes when born; the melanin has not yet been produced.
Most Raleigh and Durham residents have two eyes of the same color, but that’s no reason not to celebrate the diversity among different eye colors and the varying shades of blue, brown, green and hazel. The most common eye color is brown. Green is more rare; less than two percent of the world’s population is born with green eyes. It’s most often found in Northern Europe and Nordic countries. Even more rare is violet, amber or red-colored eyes, which are usually found in albinos.
Different Eye Colors
Fewer than 200,000 people in the U.S. have Heterochromia, a condition that’s usually caused by a disease or syndrome. In some cases, those with Heterochromia have one iris with two different colors.
While it may be tough for those with two different eye colors to pick one for a driver’s license, it’s generally not harmful. However, eye colors changing later in life might be a sign of an injury, trauma or developing health problem such as:
- A foreign body in the eye
- Inflammation in the eye
- Glaucoma or some medications used to treat it
- Waardenburg syndrome
Sudden changes in eye color are a sign it’s time to schedule an appointment with Dr. Friedland. A thorough eye examination is needed to be sure this isn’t a symptom of a medical problem.
Fun with Eye Color
While the general concept of dominant genes seems to work most of the time in eye colors, it is still possible for generations of brown-eyed people to produce a blue-eyed individual because eye color is a multi-gene trait. Still, just for fun, check out this eye color calculator.
Beth R. Friedland M.D. and Park Ophthalmology welcome patients from all areas of the Triangle and offers a wide variety of specialized services including surgery for diseases of the eye, vision examinations, eye safety information, sports medicine protective eyewear and counseling, contact lenses and evaluation, and all types of ocular diagnosis and treatment. Many types of surgery are available, including cataract and laser surgery. We are here for you and your eye and overall health. Give us a call today!
This article about different eye colors is brought to you by the professional team and the offices of Beth R. Friedland M.D. atPark Ophthalmology located in the Triangle Region of North Carolina.
The information contained in this blog article is intended solely for informational purposes and is not intended to be offered as medical advice.
5306 NC Highway 55, Suite 102 (adjacent to the RTP/ Research Triangle Park)
Durham, NC 27713
Office: 919 544 5375
Fax: 919 544 5829
Park Ophthalmology North
6512 Six Forks Road, Suite 105
Raleigh, NC 27615
919 846 6915