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Do you have a blurred vision? You might have astigmatism, a kind of refractive error of the eye that causes blurred vision. This medical condition occurs when the eye has trouble focusing light onto the retina. Normally the cornea and the lens are evenly curved, but in astigmatism, the lens and cornea develop a mismatched curvature. Astigmatism can lead to nearsightedness (also known as myopia) or farsightedness (also known as hyperopia).
Symptoms include blurred vision, eye strain, headaches, migraines, squinting, fatigue, and difficulty driving. If objects in your line of sight become blurry, it may be time to seek treatment from an eye doctor.
Astigmatism is a fairly common phenomenon, about 28% of American children have reported having this condition. Genetically, some people may be more at risk of developing astigmatism. The risk of astigmatism tends to increase with age.
There is myopic astigmatism, where the meridians of the eye become nearsighted. There is also hyperopic astigmatism, where the meridians become farsighted. Then there is mixed astigmatism, where one meridian becomes nearsighted while the other becomes farsighted.
Typically, a comprehensive eye examination is performed to determine a diagnosis of astigmatism. An eye exam can also quantify the severity of astigmatism. Some eye doctors will perform a retinoscopy, an examination that measures the amount of astigmatism you have by shining a light into your eyes. You might undergo a visual acuity test, where you read the letters on a chart to test the sharpness of your vision. There is also keratometry or topography, exams that use instruments to measure the curvature of your corneas.
There are different treatment options that you can discuss with your optometrist. Treatment plans include eyeglasses, contact lenses and refractive surgery. Refractive surgery can include laser eye surgery or manual incisions.
If your eyesight begins to interfere with everyday activities, it may be time to seek treatment for possible astigmatism. Westchester Eye Care Center is an optometry clinic serving the Los Angeles, CA area. Our services include eye examinations, surgeries, contact lenses, and eyewear. Contact us at (310) 670-1888 to request an appointment with Westchester Eye Care Center.