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Double Vision

In individuals with healthy visual systems, the eyes work together by pointing in the same direction to the same point in space and transmitting two nearly identical images to the brain. These images are automatically combined to produce a single, three-dimensional image, providing us with depth perception.

IMG_4368In individuals with double vision, or diplopia, however, the eyes aren’t able to work together effectively. Rather than focusing on the same target, they aim in different directions – transmitting two non-matching images to the brain. Because the brain is unable to combine these images into a single, cohesive picture, the individual experiences extreme visual confusion.

IMG_8764In the majority of cases, double vision is a symptom of another visual condition such as convergence insufficiency or strabismus. It may also result from a trauma to the nervous system, such as with a head injury or stroke. The key to remediating the double vision is to establish the underlying cause and treat both the cause and the double vision through lenses, prisms and optometric vision therapy.

IMG_3392At Northampton Vision Specialists, we evaluate every patient for functional problems in their visual system to determine the root cause of their double vision. We can then develop a personalized vision therapy treatment plan to retrain the eyes to work together as a team. In most cases, this also involves re-establishing a person’s depth perception and stereo vision.

I feel sure that I would not have such strong vision under anyone else’s care. Most patients with double vision have to go back under the knife. Under Dr. Ruggiero’s care and with home therapy exercises, I am hopeful that I’ll never have sustained double vision again.

Pat Duffy

Holyoke, MA

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