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Refractive Disorders

Myopia

Myopia is more commonly known as short sightedness, whereby patients have difficulty focusing on distant objects. Light entering the unaccommodating eye focuses in front of the retina causing the image to be blurred. Myopic patients often complain about reduced distance vision. Near vision may also be diminished depending on the amount of myopia. Myopia can be treated with spectacles, contact lenses and refractive surgery.

Hyperopia

Hyperopia is more commonly known as far sightedness. Light entering the unaccommodating eye focuses behind the retina.Depending on the amount of hyperopia patients may be asymptomatic or complain of eyestrain, headaches and fatigue more especially when performing near tasks. Hyperopia can be treated with spectacles, contact lenses and refractive surgery.

Astigmatism

Astigmatism occurs when the shape of the cornea is more oval as opposed to round, which can cause both distant and near objects to be blurred relative to the amount of astigmatism. Patients are often told by optometrists that their eyeball is rugby shaped. A sharp, clear image is unable to be focused on the retina due to variations in the different meridians in the eye.There are two types of astigmatism namely, regular and irregular astigmatism.

Regular astigmatism occurs when the two principal meridians of the cornea are uniform and are at right angles to each other, one meridian having the greatest curvature to the other.

Irregular astigmatism occurs when the two principal meridians are not at right angles to each other nor is the curvature uniform. Astigmatism can be corrected through spectacles, contact lenses and refractive surgery.

Presbyopia

Presbyopia is the reduced ability to focus on near objects. The elasticity of the crystalline lens allows the lens to change curvature (accommodate) to focus clearly on near objects. From the mid to early 40’s the crystalline lens hardens due to a natural aging process resulting in the diminished ability to accommodate making tasks such as reading and using your cellphone or computer very difficult.

Patients often complain about eyestrain, difficulty in reading fine print unless there is increased illumination and their arms being too short to read at a clear comfortable distance.

Presbyopia can be treated with spectacles, contact lenses and refractive surgery.

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