Amblyopia

Amblyopia, also known as “lazy eye,” is the leading cause of vision loss in children, resulting in reduced visual acuity and stereo acuity (poor depth perception). This condition occurs when the visual system receives two different images from the eyes, mainly due to eye deviation (strabismus) or a difference in the refractive error between the eyes (anisometropia). Additionally, since the brain cannot process different images simultaneously, it suppresses the visual information from the affected eye.

 

The worldwide prevalence of amblyopia stands at about 3% of the global population. Delayed or inaccurate diagnosis or improper treatment often result in partial vision loss. Unless successfully treated in early childhood, amblyopia usually persists into adulthood and affects most aspects of quality of life such as coordination, reading ability, and even road safety.

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Amblyopia

Amblyopia, also known as “lazy eye”, is the leading cause of vision loss in children, resulting in reduced visual acuity and stereo acuity (poor depth perception). Amblyopia occurs when the visual system receive two different images from the eyes, mainly due to eye deviation (strabismus) or different refractive errors between the eyes (anisometropia). Because the brain cannot process different images simultaneously, it suppresses the visual information coming from the affected eye.

The worldwide prevalence of amblyopia is up to 3%. Although treatable, delayed or inaccurate diagnosis and treatment often result in partial vision loss.

Unless it is successfully treated in early childhood amblyopia usually persists into adulthood, and is the most common cause of permanent one-eye vision impairment among children and young and middle-aged adults. An estimated 2%–3% of the population suffer from amblyopia.

Treatments

Treatments

Child with amblyopia wearing a patch

Traditional Amblyopia Treatments

Corrective eyewear

Glasses or contact lenses correct refractive errors such as near-sightedness, far-sightedness, and astigmatism that can result in amblyopia.

Eye patches

To stimulate the amblyopic eye perception, an eye patch may be prescribed to be worn over the dominant eye for two to six hours a day over a period which can extend into years.

Eyedrops

Atropine drops, usually prescribed for use on weekends or daily use. The eyedrops temporarily blur vision in the dominant eye as an alternative to patching.

Surgery

A surgery might be needed to straighten the eyes in case of eye deviation (strabismic amblyopia) or if the child is suffering from droopy eyelids or cataracts that could cause deprivation amblyopia.

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Novel Amblyopia Treatments
Binocular Therapy

VR headsets

Patients watch modified TV shows or movies through a virtual reality headset.

Video games

Modifiedimple video games can be used to treat amblyopia with the use of 3D glasses and specially designed apps

CureSight™

A digital eye-tracking based amblyopia treatment that works with any streamed content, ensuring high compliance in any country, language, and age. Also, It is the first and only digital device that has been clinically proven as an effective alternative to the gold standard eye patch treatment in children.

FAQ

Current treatments fall short as they are uncomfortable, often do not result in full vision recovery, and are monocular in nature. Since amblyopia is a binocular deficit, these current treatments rarely improve binocular vision and stereoacuity (depth perception).
Though effective, patching has numerous limitations. Patching suffers from very low compliance rates as the eyepatch is limiting, inconvenient and bares social stigma. Furthermore, while using the patch, the visual system doesn’t receive input from the dominant eye which limits the development of depth perception and synchronization between the two eyes. This is one of the reasons why amblyopic patients may experience recurring amblyopia following patching treatment as their eyes are not trained to work together.
Treatment with atropine drops also causes great discomfort and consequently low compliance. Prolonged use of atropine drops may lead to local eye irritation and redness, stinging, swelling of the eyelids, sensitivity to bright light, dry mouth, and blurred vision.
The blurred vision, caused by the atropine, will last for approximately seven days after
the last administration. The dilated pupil may remain for as long as 14 days.
There are emerging alternative digital treatments such as VR headsets and mobile games that act as a training routine. These alternatives are hard to comply with as they utilize uncomfortable gear that is not suited for young children or require the active participation of the patient with repetitive training routines not always suitable for young ages.

One eye can become progressively weaker than the other during infancy or childhood due to the brain favoring the other eye. Early screening is important because treatment is more effective when started early to not cause further damage.

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CureSight Amblyopia Treatment: Replace Patching with 3D Glasses and Netflix For the Win!

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