Double Vision (Diplopia)

Developing double vision that lasts more than a couple minutes feels scary. When it happens, get it checked out right away. The doctors at Eye Physicians in New York City offer exceptional emergency eye care for just such situations. They have the best diagnostics too so they can develop the perfect treatment for double vision for you. Double vision, called diplopia, may respond quickly to very little treatment of diplopia, or you may need more extensive double vision treatment. Call your NYC eye doctor now to get the best diplopia treatment.

    What Is Diplopia?

    Double Vision (Diplopia)Seeing two images when there should only be one is commonly called double vision. Diplopia is the medical term for seeing double. When you have double vision, you may see two images that are vertical, diagonal or side by side. Diplopia is usually a temporary problem, but in some cases, it’s a sign of a serious underlying issue. It can affect people of all ages but is most common among people over the age of 60.

    Seeing double can be disturbing and it’s one of the most common reasons for emergency room visits. See a reputable and experienced optometrist right away if you have double vision or other signs of eye problems that concern you. For double vision treatment and the best comprehensive eye care in downtown Manhattan, visit Eye Physicians.

    What Are the Signs and Symptoms that I May Need Treatment of Double Vision?

    Diplopia is divided into two categories, which are monocular diplopia and binocular diplopia. Monocular diplopia is the most common category of diplopia and usually the least serious. It affects just one eye and symptoms continue even when the other eye is covered. Symptoms of binocular diplopia only happen when both eyes are open.

    The main symptom of double vision is seeing two images of an object at the same time when you know there should only be one, but there may be other symptoms such as:

    Some people with diplopia experience pain when moving their eyes. Double vision can affect depth perception making it difficult to walk or drive, which may cause loss of balance. If you have double vision, you may experience symptoms constantly or your symptoms may come and go. In some people, symptoms develop gradually while in other people, they develop suddenly.

    Children with double vision may not know how to explain what’s wrong. See a pediatric eye doctor near me at Eye Physicians for diplopia treatments if you notice signs of possible double vision such as covering one eye, squinting or looking at objects from an unusual angle.

    What Causes Double Vision?

    Seeing normally requires your eye muscles, nerves and your brain to all work together. Issues with any of these can lead to double vision.

    Causes of monocular double vision usually come from the eye itself, not from any type of neurological problem and include:

    • Dry eyes
    • Astigmatism
    • Infections such as herpes zoster or shingles
    • Problems with the lens of the eye, such as cataracts
    • Drinking too much alcohol

    Binocular double vision sometimes has more serious causes.

    Some of the more serious causes of binocular diplopia include:

    • Problems with the cranial nerve
    • Misaligned eyes
    • Stroke
    • Brain aneurysm
    • Migraine headache
    • Head trauma or damage to an eye socket from a black eye
    • Brain tumor

    Several different medical conditions can affect or damage nerves, including the cranial nerve. These conditions can cause problems with the eyes including double vision.

    Examples include:

    • Myasthenia gravis
    • Graves’ disease
    • Diabetes Link to Diabetic Eye Exam
    • Multiple sclerosis
    • Guillain barre syndrome

    Monocular diplopia can usually be diagnosed with an eye examination, Link to Eye Exam/Eye Test/Vision Test which involves checking the health of your eyes and patterns of eye movement along with the alignment of your eyes. Your eye doctor asks questions such as whether your symptoms worsen if you change your head position. To diagnose binocular diplopia, your NYC best-in-class ophthalmologist may order an imaging test such as an MRI or CT scan to capture images of the eyes and the area around them.

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    What Are Some Options for Treatment for Double Vision?

    Diplopia treatment requires accurately identifying the underlying cause, since treating double vision depends on what type of double vision you have and what’s causing it.

    Some cases of diplopia go away on their own while others require specific diplopia treatments, which may include:

    • Prescription eye drops.When eyes dry out quickly or don’t make enough tears, they may trigger double vision. Prescription eye drops can relieve dryness.
    • Eyepatch. An eyepatch can be used to block the vision of one eye in monocular diplopia to reduce symptoms of double vision.
    • Cataract surgery. A cataract is clouding of the lens of the eye and can cause blurry vision, double vision and difficulty seeing at night. If a cataract triggers double vision, cataract surgery to remove the clouding may be the best form of double vision treatment.
    • Corrective lenses. Corrective eyeglasses or contact lenses may be prescribed to treat astigmatism, a condition in which the cornea is misshapen. Corrective lenses compensate for the irregular eye shape that can cause refractive errors and symptoms such as double vision. A prism may be used to align images so that they aren’t seen as double.
    • Laser surgery. A misshapen cornea can be reshaped with laser surgery.
    • Botox. An injection of Botox may be recommended to help to relax eye muscles.
    • Eye muscle correction. Strabismus is a condition in which the eyes aren’t aligned, and the eyes may be turned inward or outward. In this condition, the eyes don’t look at the same place at the same time. The brain may adapt by ignoring input from one eye, which can lead to lazy eye. Link to Lazy Eye (Amblyopia) Surgery Link to Lazy Eye Surgery can be done on eye muscles to correct the positioning of the eyes.

    If the lens of the eye has been dislocated because of trauma, surgery may be required to fix it. Eye exercises may improve symptoms of double vision related to convergence insufficiency, a condition that affects how the eyes work together. This condition can start in childhood or may develop after a head injury.

    When Should I See an Eye Doctor for Double Vision Treatment?

    If symptoms of seeing double don’t go away within a few hours after they begin, visit your New York eye doctor as soon as possible. This is especially important if double vision is accompanied by slurred speech, confusion, pain or dizziness.

    Don’t delay reaching out to the vision experts at Eye Physicians for accurate diagnosis and treatment of diplopia or other vision changes. While most causes of double vision aren’t dangerous, diplopia that starts suddenly could be caused by a brain tumor or aneurysm and could be life-threatening. For the best eye care in NYC, contact Eye Physicians today.

    Page Updated on Jul 3, 2024 by Dr. William Hogue, OD (Optometrist) of Eye Physicians
    William Hogue, OD

    My name is Dr. William Hogue, and I am an optometrist dedicated to providing top-quality professional eye care. I'm trained in treating various ocular conditions, including dry eye syndrome, glaucoma, and retinal issues.

    I earned my chemistry degree summa cum laude from the University of Tennessee. Subsequently, I obtained my Doctorate of Optometry (OD) and Master of Science (MS) from the New England College of Optometry. Following graduation, I completed an ocular disease residency at the State University of New York’s College of Optometry. Beyond my clinical work, I have also been a supporter of Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity (SVOSH).

    More about Dr. Hogue

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    110 Lafayette St, Suite 503
    New York, NY 10013
    (212) 292-4814

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