Strabismus & Amblyopia
Strabismus, or “crossed or wandering eye”, is an eye teaming deficit – the eyes do not work together to form a two-eyed 3D view of the world. It can be one or both eyes that drift in, out, up or down, and can be all the time or just sometimes.
Amblyopia, or “lazy eye”, is the lack of development of clear eyesight in one or both eyes, not caused by an ocular health issue, and it cannot be corrected with glasses alone.
Some people have both amblyopia and strabismus, but it is also possible to have either on its own. Refractive anisometropic amblyopia is the most common type. This is where one eye has a much higher prescription (typically farsightedness) than the other “good” eye causing its pathway to not develop as well in early childhood.
Amblyopia can be improved at any age and without full opaque patching.
How is Amblyopia & Strabismus Treated?
At Summit Vision Center, we take a comprehensive and sensory (eye-brain connection) approach to amblyopia and strabismus. Our treatment includes:
Binocular Lens Prescription
A prescription (glasses or contacts) that looks to optimize binocular vision (eye teaming, depth) and not solely eye sight is an important piece of treatment. If there is a large difference in power between the two eyes, often contact lenses or a "size lens" is recommended to reduce magnification of one eye's image which is helpful for eye teamin
One-on-one individualized vision therapy is used to both establish sensory fusion (seeing with both eyes together) as well as improve binocular vision and other visual skills that are often impacted by amblyopia (like oculomotor skills and visual perception). Vision therapy can be successful alone or in conjunction to other treatments, and even before and/or after strabismus surgeries.
Using Monocular Fixation In A Binocular Field (MFBF) is proving to be more impactful than the historical complete patching. MFBF is a form of dichoptic viewing where both eyes still see a portion of the view, but only the amblyopic "lazy eye" sees the details. This allows more opportunity for the eyes to learn to work as a team while still training the amblyopic eye to see detail more clearly.
What can we do?
There are many effective treatments for both strabismus and amblyopia including: glasses, bifocals, prism, contact lenses, vision therapy, monocular fixation in a binocular field “MFBF”, partial patching, atropine drops, patching, and surgical intervention. Each individual’s unique diagnosis (evaluating onset, severity, frequency, and more) will determine which treatment is most effective for a particular case and oftentimes a combination of treatments is recommended.
The first step to determine the best treatment options is to schedule an evaluation at our office.