What is astigmatism?
Astigmatism is a type of refractive error that usually presents at birth. An abnormal shape of the cornea or lens causes two focal points in two locations, making objects up close and at a distance appear blurry. Astigmatism may occur at the same time as nearsightedness or farsightedness.
Symptoms of Astigmatism
- Problems with focusing and seeing details at any distance
- Blurred vision
Diagnosis of Astigmatism
Astigmatism can be diagnosed during a general eye exam by:
- A visual acuity test to measure vision at distances
- A refraction test to determine the correct prescription for glasses
- A slit-lamp exam to assess the structures of the eyes
- Corneal imaging (mapping) to evaluate the shape of the cornea (corneal topography or tomography)
Treatment Options for Astigmatism
- Contact lenses
- Corneal based corrective laser surgery, such as laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) or photorefractive keratectomy (PRK)
- Lens-based surgery using a special intraocular lens implant
Consult with your eye doctor during routine exams to evaluate your risk for developing astigmatism and to discuss any next steps.