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Can LASIK correct "lazy eye"?

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    Gregory J. Pamel, MD

    Pamel Vision & Laser Group
    115 East 61st Street
    Suite 1B
    New York, NY 10021
    (888) 485-5688
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    Sandra Belmont, MD, FACS

    Belmont Eye Center
    121 East 61st Street
    New York, NY 10065
    2124862020
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    Dean Dornic, MD

    Laser Eye Center of Carolina
    3701 NW Cary Parkway
    Suite 101
    Cary, NC 27513
    (800) 576-8978
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    Dean Dornic, MD

    Eye Specialists of Carolina
    1609 Booker Dairy Road
    Smithfield, NC 27577
    (800) 576-8978
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No. Amblyopia (commonly called "lazy eye") is poor vision in a healthy eye, despite the best lens correction. It develops in early childhood and is caused by poor transmission of visual images to the brain for a sustained period of time. The eyes are healthy, but cells in the visual part of the brain don't receive the proper stimulation for the sense of vision to develop properly. Amblyopia usually occurs in one eye only, but in some cases both eyes can be affected.

The primary cause of amblyopia is strabismus (misalignment of the eyes). The second-leading cause is anisometropia (unequal refractive error in the two eyes).

Most experts agree amblyopia must be treated in childhood for the treatment to be effective. Once the critical period of vision development (thought to be before age 10) has passed, visual improvement from amblyopia treatment is limited.

Treatment of amblyopia includes: surgery to properly align the eyes (for strabismic amblyopia), patching the "good" eye to force the amblyopic eye to be used more, and wearing contact lenses (for anisometropic amblyopia).

LASIK can correct the refractive error of both your eyes. But if one of your eyes is amblyopic, it will remain blurred in comparison to your "good" eye.

Note: This information is for general education purposes only. It is not to be used as a substitute for medical advice from your eye doctor or refractive surgeon.

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