LASIK for Amblyopia

LASIK for Amblyopia (Lazy Eye) in Chicago, IL

LASIK (Laser-Assisted in Situ Keratomileusis) has revolutionized vision correction by addressing refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. However, when it comes to fixing a lazy eye (amblyopia), LASIK might not be the primary solution. While LASIK can enhance visual acuity, it has its limitations in treating underlying amblyopia. Our experts at the Kraff Eye Institute will explain what you need to know below.

What Is Lazy Eye (Amblyopia)?
What Is Lazy Eye (Amblyopia)?

What Is Lazy Eye (Amblyopia)?

Lazy eye, also known as amblyopia, is a visual disorder characterized by reduced vision in one eye, often due to inadequate visual stimulation during early childhood. When a patient is amblyopic, one eye is under-stimulated and will typically start moving inward or outward as a result. This condition arises when the brain starts to favor the more stimulated eye which causes the vision in the amblyopic eye to not develop to its full potential.

Amblyopia can result from factors such as strabismus (misalignment of the eyes) or significant differences in refractive errors between the eyes. There are three types of amblyopia — strabismus amblyopia, refractive amblyopia, and deprivation amblyopia. To prevent long-term vision loss or vision impairment, early diagnosis and appropriate interventions are crucial.

How Can LASIK Help with a Lazy Eye?

LASIK eye surgery is a safe and effective treatment for patients who are myopic, hyperopic, and have an astigmatism. During vision correction surgery the cornea is reshaped and a microscopic amount of tissue is removed from the cornea. By reshaping the cornea, the light that enters and passes through the eye can focus correctly on the retina.

When someone is amblyopic, their brain has difficulty perceiving and interpreting images. Removing tissue from the cornea won't improve how the brain perceives images. However if treated early enough in children, many patients who are amblyopic can still achieve 20/20 vision.

Being amblyopic doesn't immediately disqualify someone from being a LASIK eye surgery candidate, but a patient must understand that surgery won't necessarily give them better vision than they have in glasses or contact lenses.

How Can LASIK Help with a Lazy Eye?
How to Find Out If LASIK Can Help with Your Lazy Eye

How to Find Out If LASIK Can Help with Your Lazy Eye

Can LASIK correct a lazy eye? Determining if LASIK eye surgery can improve your lazy eye involves a comprehensive assessment by an eye care professional. First, you'll undergo a thorough eye examination to identify the underlying causes of the lazy eye, such as refractive errors, amblyopia severity, and any additional eye conditions.

A collaborative discussion between you and your eye care specialist will determine the best course of action tailored to your needs.

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How We Perform the LASIK Procedure for Amblyopia

A LASIK procedure for someone with amblyopia is no different than a regular LASIK procedure. During LASIK surgery, Dr. Kraff will first use a laser to create a thin flap on the surface of the cornea. Once created, Dr. Kraff will lift the flap and use another laser to reshape the cornea, removing this small amount of tissue from the cornea will allow light to focus more precisely on the retina.

Once complete, Dr. Kraff will realign the flap over the surface of the cornea and the flap will start to heal into place. It's important to note that surgery won't give patients who are amblyopic, better vision than what they're correctable to pre-operatively.

How We Perform the LASIK Procedure for Amblyopia
Effectiveness of Lazy Eye LASIK Treatment

Effectiveness of Lazy Eye LASIK Treatment

The effectiveness of LASIK for lazy eye (amblyopia) will depend on several factors. While LASIK can correct refractive errors, its ability to address the underlying neural issues causing lazy eye is limited. LASIK primarily improves visual acuity by reshaping the cornea, but it doesn't directly target the brain-eye connection responsible for amblyopia.

Success hinges on factors like the patient's age, severity of amblyopia, and presence of other eye conditions. In many cases, a combination of laser eye surgery and complementary therapies like patching or vision therapy is more effective in achieving significant visual improvement and binocular vision. This enhances the overall results for individuals with lazy eyes.

Alternatives to LASIK for Lazy Eye Treatment

There are several alternatives to laser eye surgery when treating amblyopia, that focus on improving visual acuity and addressing the underlying neural factors. These alternatives aim to stimulate the weaker eye's development and enhance binocular vision for improved depth perception.

Some options include:

  • Eye patch over the stronger eye;
  • Eyeglasses (if the lazy eye is caused by a significant refractive error);
  • A Bangerter filter (a special filter that can be placed on the lens of the child’s eyeglasses to reduce vision in the stronger eye);
Alternatives to LASIK for Lazy Eye Treatment
alternatives-to-lasik-for-lazy-eye-
  • Atropine eye drops (dilating the pupil of the stronger eye to blur its vision temporarily, forcing the brain to rely more on the weaker eye);
  • Eye muscle surgery;
  • Vision therapy (specialized exercises and activities designed to improve eye coordination, focusing, and visual processing skills).

It's important to note that the effectiveness of these alternatives depends on factors like the severity of the lazy eye and the age of the individual. Consulting with an eye care professional can help you identify a safe procedure that's customized to your affected eye.

Unlock Clearer Vision for Lazy Eye at Kraff Eye Institute

Contact us today to explore tailored treatments and embark on your journey to improved vision and confidence!

312-757-7335Schedule Consultation
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Why Our Clients Think We're the Best LASIK Clinic for Lazy Eye

Patients consider Kraff Eye Institute as the premier LASIK clinic for lazy eye due to our unparalleled expertise and patient-centered approach. Our team of experienced ophthalmologists offers personalized treatment plans that extend beyond LASIK and address the lazy eye through a multilayered approach. Our commitment to the use of advanced technology, tailored therapies, and exceptional care ensures optimal outcomes for each patient. At Kraff Eye Institute, we prioritize vision improvement and patient satisfaction, often making us the top choice for comprehensive lazy eye solutions.

Alternatives to LASIK for Lazy Eye Treatment

Reviews For Refractive Lens Exchange Services At Kraff Eye, Chicago

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About Your Doctor

Don't trust just anyone to restore your vision. Dr. Kraff has been at the forefront of LASER eye surgery since its inception. He was a part of the initial 1991 FDA clinical study which looked at the safety and effectiveness of LASIK surgery and is considered a pioneer within the refractive surgery community. With having performed over 70,000 procedures, Dr. Kraff is the most skilled and knowledgeable surgeon performing LASIK eye surgery today.

Schedule a Free Consultation Appointment

If you're ready to treat your amblyopia and become less reliant on contact lenses or glasses, schedule your no-cost consultation with Dr. Colman Kraff today!

312-444-1111Schedule Consultation
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FAQ

How much does it cost to fix a lazy eye?

Expand F.A.Q.

Strabismus surgery to correct for a lazy eye isn't performed at the Kraff Eye Institute. Dr. Kraff can refer you to a specialist who performs this procedure and their office can give you a better idea as to what the cost would be.

Can LASIK make lazy eye worse?

Expand F.A.Q.

LASIK surgery is when a doctor removes and reshapes the corneal tissue of the cornea to improve a patient’s vision. LASIK won't affect how the brain interprets the images once the light focuses on the retina.

Can lazy eye be corrected in adults?

Expand F.A.Q.

The most successful way to treat amblyopia is when the treatment occurs while the patient is still a child. Treatments include glasses, contacts, vision therapy, and patching the eye. The older the patient gets, the less likely it is that their vision will improve with therapy and treatments. If you have additional questions, we are happy to help you find a path forward to improve your vision.