How do doctors treat a lazy eye in adult patients?


Quick Answer

Lazy eye can be treated in adult patients through a combination of treatments, including glasses and contacts, eye patches and vision therapy programs. Although lazy eye is more easily treated in children, adults experience positive outcomes with treatment and often see an improvement in vision.

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Full Answer

Lazy eye is a medical condition that causes blurry or reduced vision that is not correctable by glasses or contact lenses and is not caused by any eye disease. In patients with lazy eye, the brain does not fully acknowledge the images seen by the eye, causing blurred or incomplete vision. Lazy eye is a neurological disorder caused by developmental problems during the early period of brain and vision development, from birth to 6 years of age.

Lazy eye is typically considered irreversible if not treated by age 8, but new treatments have increased the likelihood of successful outcomes in adult patients. Specifically, a study conducted by the University of Southern California in 2008 treated 20-year-old patients diagnosed with lazy eye. The non-surgical treatment required the patients to perform simple visual tasks over a set period of time. At the end of the study, most patients had improved their vision to 20/20. Additionally, traditional treatments for lazy eye can produce improvement in adults, although evaluation must be done on a case-by-case basis.

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