A hyphema is a collection of blood inside the front part of the eye (called the anterior chamber, between the cornea and the iris). The blood may cover part or all of the iris (the colored part of the eye) and the pupil, and may partly or totally block vision in that eye. Hyphema is usually caused by trauma to the eye, though other conditions may cause hyphema as well.
Unlike a subconjunctival hemorrhage, a generally painless, harmless condition where blood appears in the front part of the eye due to a broken blood vessel, a hyphema is usually painful and can cause permanent vision problems if not treated properly.
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