Astigmatism is a type of refractive error of the eye. Refractive errors cause blurred vision. They are the most common reason why a person goes to see an eye professional.
Other types of refractive errors are:
People are able to see because the front part of the eye (cornea) is able to bend (refract) light and focus it onto the retina. This is the back inside surface of the eye.
If the light rays are not clearly focused on the retina, the images you see may be blurry.
With astigmatism, the cornea is abnormally curved. This curve causes vision to be out of focus.
The cause of astigmatism is unknown. It is most often present from birth. Astigmatism often occurs together with nearsightedness or farsightedness. If astigmatism gets worse, it may be a sign of keratoconus.
Astigmatism is very common. It sometimes occurs after certain types of eye surgery, such as cataract surgery.
Astigmatism makes it hard to see fine details, either close up or from a distance.
Mild astigmatism may not need to be corrected.
Glasses or contact lenses will correct astigmatism, but do not cure it.
Laser surgery can help change the shape of the cornea surface to eliminate astigmatism, along with nearsightedness or farsightedness.
Edward Manche is an Ophthalmologist in Palo Alto, California. Dr. Manche has been practicing medicine for over 26 years and is rated as an Elite doctor by MediFind in the treatment of Astigmatism. He is also highly rated in 6 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Astigmatism, Nearsightedness, Corneal Dystrophy and Perceptive Deafness, and Macular Corneal Dystrophy Type 1. He is licensed to treat patients in California. Dr. Manche is currently accepting new patients.
Seth Pantanelli is an Ophthalmologist in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Dr. Pantanelli has been practicing medicine for over 13 years and is rated as an Elite doctor by MediFind in the treatment of Astigmatism. He is also highly rated in 17 other conditions, according to our data. His top areas of expertise are Astigmatism, Cataract, Macular Corneal Dystrophy Type 1, and Dry Eye Syndrome. He is licensed to treat patients in Pennsylvania and Florida. Dr. Pantanelli is currently accepting new patients.
Gerd Auffarth is in Heidelberg, Germany. Auffarth is rated as an Elite expert by MediFind in the treatment of Astigmatism. They are also highly rated in 12 other conditions, according to our data. Their top areas of expertise are Cataract, Astigmatism, Presbyopia, and Aniridia.
Astigmatism may change with time, requiring new glasses or contact lenses. Laser vision correction can most often eliminate, or greatly reduce astigmatism.
In children, uncorrected astigmatism in only one eye may cause amblyopia.
Call your health care provider or ophthalmologist if vision problems worsen, or do not improve with glasses or contact lenses.
Published Date : August 18, 2020
Published By : Franklin W. Lusby, MD, ophthalmologist, Lusby Vision Institute, La Jolla, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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Jain S, Hardten DR, Ang LPK, Azar DT. Excimer laser surface ablation: photorefractive keratectomy (PRK), laser subepithelial Keratomileusis (LASEK), and Epi-LASIK. In: Yanoff M, Duker JS, eds. Ophthalmology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019:chap 3.3.
Olitsky SE, Marsh JD. Abnormalities of refraction and accommodation. In: Kliegman RM, St. Geme JW, Blum NJ, Shah SS, Tasker RC, Wilson KM, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 21st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 638.