Amblyopia, also known as lazy eye, is a vision development disorder in which an eye fails to achieve normal visual acuity, even with prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses.
Amblyopia begins during infancy and early childhood. In most cases, only one eye is affected. But in some cases, reduced visual acuity can occur in both eyes.
Particularly if lazy eye is detected early in life and promptly treated, reduced vision can be avoided. But if left untreated, lazy eye can cause severe visual disability in the affected eye, including legal blindness.
It’s estimated that about 2 to 4 percent of the U.S. population has some degree of amblyopia (the same in Italy).
Because amblyopia typically is a problem of infant vision development, symptoms of the condition can be difficult to discern. However, a common cause of amblyopia is strabismus (eye misalignment).
Another clue that your child may have amblyopia is if he or she cries or fusses when you cover one eye.
Have your child’s eyes examined as recommended to make sure he or she has normal vision in both eyes and that the eyes function together properly as a team
There are three types of amblyopia, based on the underlying cause: