Yellow vision - xanthopsia

Legend By Legend, 31st Oct 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>General Health>Eyes & Vision

Xanthopsia is the condition of seeing the world in yellow. Yellow vision is a very rare medical complaint. Known possible causes are described in this article as well as the theorized mechanism involved.

Yellow vision - xanthopsia

The complaint of yellow vision is a rather rare complaint in medicine. The condition is known as "xanthopsia" and is usually described as a transparent viel of yellow which covers the eyes. In many patients, the situation comes and goes thus making very aware of a reccurent visual disturbance. A commonly ascribed culprit is the (Na) sodium channels in the optic nerve. There are a few possible conditions which are known to be associated with xanthopsia. These will be described in the next paragraphs.

Xanthopsia - associated medical conditions - digitalis

Although the medical compliant of xanthopsia is relatively rare, it tends to frequent medical exams where it is classically associated with chronic digitalis overdosing. Although in practice, digitalis overdosing rarely presents as xanthopsia, since abdominal complaints and nausea usually occur first. The most famous case of xanthopsia which has been ascribed to digitalis is Vincent Van Goh the painter who was treated with digitalis at high doses. Some medical historians claim that Van Goh's excess use of yellow in his painting is because of this.

Xanthopsia - associated medical conditions - vitamins

Although probably extremely rare, there are a few cases of vitamin deficiencies which have been associated with complaints of yellow vision. As a rule, in these instances, xanthopsia was not the only symptom and other signs and symptoms of vitamin deficiency were apparent. Namely these include vitamin A and vitamin B6. In either case, rapid reversal of the problem was achieved as soon as the vitamin deficiencey was addressed thus helping to establish the deficiency as the cause as well as solving the problem for the patient.

In sum

Xanthopsia or yellow vision is a very rare medical complaint. Nonetheless, it is a complaint which warrants detailed investigation and could potentially be a sign of significant underlying disease. Fortunately, most causes of xanthopsia are quite amenable to treatment once the cause has been diagnosed.


Digitalis, Digoxin, Eye, Optic, Vitamin, Xanthopsia, Yellow Vision

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author avatar Legend
I am a practicing physician. I have spent 5 years in Yeshiva studying religion. I published a card game on wikinut and I am in a process of getting divorced

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author avatar Grumpybear
3rd Nov 2013 (#)

Good page. ty. :)

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