Amblyopia, commonly referred to as a lazy eye, is a common condition in children. Without early medical intervention, it prevents the development of normal, healthy vision. Typically affecting just one eye, it is often caused by other eye and vision issues, such as refractive errors, a droopy eyelid, and cataracts.
Researchers at the University of Huddersfield are currently hoping to raise awareness of amblyopia with a study into the visual acuity of children of different ages. There is also a revolutionary new treatment being developed to effectively combat the condition. Discover more about the latest research and what it means for the future of amblyopia treatment below.
New treatment for amblyopia in the works
The FDA has recently approved a new amblyopia treatment device developed by industry leaders NovaSight. The device, known as CureSight, has shown exceptional promise in recent studies, which compared it to the traditional gold standard treatment of patching.
Findings showed the group using CureSight had better results than patching. In this group, 80% of the participants experienced an improvement of two lines, while only 60% of those in the control patching group achieved the same improvement.
The new device is an eye tracking system that aims to train the patient to use both eyes simultaneously. Now that it has FDA clearance, the treatment will soon be an effective alternative to eye patching.
Current research hopes to raise awareness of amblyopia
Researchers at the University of Huddersfield’s Centre for Vision across the Life Span (CVLS) are on a mission to increase awareness about the importance of children’s eye health as well as early diagnosis and treatment of amblyopia. As part of a new study, they are providing free vision screenings to over 1000 primary school students in Kirklees.
The study is assessing the visual acuity of children of varying ages, examining their ability to see small letters, differentiate between closely spaced letters, such as those within a word, and understand the relationship between these visual measures and reading speed.
The assessments will adhere to the standard NHS vision screening protocol for children between four and five years old. They will also evaluate additional aspects of vision and reading for a broader age range, including children from three to 11 years old.
Through this study, the researchers aim to determine how test-taking skills develop with age and their influence on learning to read.
What is amblyopia?
Amblyopia, commonly known as lazy eye, is a common eye disorder that impacts vision. It causes one eye to have diminished vision during infancy or childhood, and if left untreated, the condition can worsen.
In a child with amblyopia, one eye experiences blurry vision while the other maintains clear vision. As a result, the brain starts to disregard the blurred eye and depends solely on the eye with better vision. As the brain becomes more reliant on the stronger eye, it causes further deterioration in the weaker eye.
If you are concerned your child is suffering with amblyopia, book a consultation with consultant ophthalmologist and children’s eye specialist, Mr Imran Jawaid.