Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Amblyopia Treatment

Treatment for amblyopia should start during early childhood. The eye and brain are more sensitive to treatment during development. The earlier treatment is started, the better chance a child has for success. Treatment may last for a few months to a year. The type of treatment varies, depending on how severely the vision is affected. Treatment for amblyopia may include patching one eye, corrective lenses, and surgery.

Treatment for amblyopia may include:

  • Corrective lenses for amblyopia:
    • Eyeglasses or contacts may correct the vision completely, avoiding the need for additional treatment.
  • Eye patch for amblyopia:
    • Patching the healthy eye forces the brain to use the weak eye.
    • Over time, the brain adjusts to the visual information coming from the lazy eye.
  • Eyedrops:
    • Atropine drops are used in the good eye.
    • This causes blurry vision in the good eye, and the brain is "forced" to use the lazy eye.
  • Surgery for amblyopia may be performed when:
    • Amblyopia is due to congenital cataracts
    • The eyes are severely crossed
    • Both eyes are deviated toward the temples.

Amblyopia Questions For Doctor

The following are some important questions to ask before and after the treatment of an amblyopia.

Questions to ask before treatment:

  • What are my treatment options?
    • Is surgery an option for me?
  • What are the risks associated with treatment?
  • Do I need to stay in the hospital?
    • How long will I be in the hospital?
  • What are the complications I should watch for?
  • How long will I be on medication?
  • What are the potential side effects of my medication?
  • Does my medication interact with nonprescription medicines or supplements?
  • Should I take my medication with food?

Questions to ask after treatment:
  • Do I need to change my diet?
  • Are there any medications or supplements I should avoid?
  • When can I resume my normal activities?
  • When can I return to work?
  • How often will I need to see my doctor for checkups?
  • What local support and other resources are available?

Continue to Amblyopia Home Care

Last Updated: Mar 3, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Amblyopia References
  1. Bacal DA. Amblyopia treatment studies. Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2004 Oct;15(5):432-6. [15625906]
  2. Powell C, Porooshani H, Bohorquez M, Richardson S. Screening for amblyopia in childhood. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2005 Jul 20;(3):CD005020. [16034962]
  3. Simons K. Amblyopia characterization, treatment, and prophylaxis. Surv Ophthalmol. 2005 Mar-Apr;50(2):123-66. [15749306]
  4. Thompson G. Common childhood eye problems. Practitioner. 2004 Jan;248(1654):46-52. [14997741]
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