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Amblyopia (lazy eye) is when the brain favors one eye and does not acknowledge the images seen by the amblyopic eye to the full extent.

amblyopia-lazyeye

Facts:

  • 3% of children under the age of six have some form of lazy eye
  • Amblyopia causes more visual loss in the under 40 group than all the injuries and diseases combined in this age group
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Causes:

Amblyopia's vision loss takes place in the brain. As the eye-sight of a child develops, sometimes one eye will see more clearly while the other eye sees a blur. While the child might not be able to express this blur, the brain fixes the problem on its own by suppressing the blurry eye to avoid double vision.

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Symptoms:

  • A wondering eye
  • Eyes that do not work together
  • Poor depth perception
  • Difficulty driving
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Types:

  • Refractive Amblyopia is when one eye is more near or far sighted than the other, making it challenging for the eyes to focus collectively.
  • Strabismic Amblyopia is when the brain is unable to align the eyes properly causing one eye to wander.
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Diagnosis:

  • Eye Examination
  • Cycloplegic Drops
  • Special Visual Acuity Tests
  • Comprehensive Vision Evaluations
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Treatment:

Treatment involves glasses, drops, vision therapy and/or patching. Recent medical research has proven that amblyopia is successfully treated up to the age of 17. Treatment of amblyopia after the age of 17 is not dependent upon age but requires more effort including vision therapy. Although improvements are possible at any age with proper treatment, early detection and treatment still offer the best outcome.

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Related Terms:

Myopia, Hypermetropia, Exotropia, Diplopia, Anisometropia

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