Amblyopia also known as lazy eye is an eye disorder in which one eye loses the ability to see details. The eye itself looks normal but it is not working properly because the brain is favoring the other eye.It is a common vision problem in children.
Strabismic amblyopia : This happens as a result of misaligned eyes. When this happens, the brain ignores images sent from the weaker eye. This results in vision loss in the weaker eye.
Deprivation amblyopia : This occurs when cataract or conditions similar to it deprives a child’s eye of visual experience. If not treated early, this can result in poor vision. This type usually affects both eyes.
Refractive amblyopia : It happens when there is a large or unequal amount of refractive error (glasses strength) in a child’s eyes. The brain then ignores the eye that has more farsightedness or more astigmatism.
Amblyopia is caused by an abnormal development of the nerve pathway from the eye to the brain during childhood. The abnormal eye therefore send blurred or wrong images to the brain. This confuses the brain which in turn ignores images from the weak eye. The most common cause of Amblyopia is strabismus. These two usually occur together however someone can have Amblyopia without strabismus and one can also have strabismus without Amblyopia. Amblyopia may also be hereditary.
Childhood cataract, farsightedness, nearsightedness and astigmatism may also cause this eye disorder.
Signs of this disease includes
- poor vision in one eye
- eyes that are turned in or out
- eyes that do not work together
- exhibition of poor depth perception
TESTS AND DIAGNOSIS
A complete detailed eye exam will be able to diagnose this condition.
First of all , any underlying eye condition causing this disease such as cataract will have to be treated.
Children with a refractive error (nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism) will need glasses
A patch may also be put on the normal eye. This forces the weak eye to work harder.
Children whose vision do not fully recover need to wear glasses with protective polycarbonate lenses.
Early diagnosis and treatment is crucial to prevent permanent vision loss. All children should have a complete eye exam at least once between the ages of 3 and 5.REFERENCES
Amblyopia. National Eye Institute. http://www.nei.nih.gov/health/amblyopia/factsaboutamblyopia.pdf. Accessed December 9, 2013
Amblyopia. The National Library of Medicine. MedlinePlus. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001014.htm. Accessed December 9, 2013
Amblyopia. American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus. http://www.aapos.org/terms/conditions/21. Accessed December 9, 2013
Amblyopia (Lazy eye ). American Optometric Association. http://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/eye-and-vision-problems/glossary-of-eye-and-vision-conditions/amblyopia. Accessed December 9, 2013
Amblyopia: What Is Lazy Eye? American Academy of Ophthalmology. http://geteyesmart2-px.ezlcl.com/eyesmart/diseases/amblyopia.cfm. Accessed December 9,2013
The American Heritage® Stedman’s Medical Dictionary. Retrieved December 2013 from Dictionary.com website.http://dictionary.reference.com.