Help - 11 year old son with amblyopia

Discussion in 'Optometry Archives' started by LG, Jul 13, 2006.

  1. LG

    LG Guest

    My son, aged 11, has only recently (in the last 2 weeks) been diagnosed
    with Amblyopia. He has excellent (6/4.5) vision in his left eye but is
    very long-sighted in the right eye and can only read about 20% (6/30
    just) in that eye without glasses. This is brought up to only about 50%
    (6/12) vision in the poor eye with glasses. The eyesight problem has
    only recently been diagnosed by chance, as he has never had any
    problems reading or headaches - his left eye has been doing all the
    work. I feel terribly guilty we did not spot this earlier, and am
    anxious to do what I can for him before it is too late. Sadly, we were
    told by the optician he is now too old for patching. However, after
    doing some research on the internet, I have read that studies are being
    carried out in the US patching older children with some positive
    results. Then I came across some work by a team at Nottingham
    University, developing a Virtual Reality system which sounds like it
    might be even more suitable for my son. Furthermore I have come across
    UK optomotrists on the internet who mention on their sites they are
    happy to treat amblyopia in older children by patching and vision
    therapy. I have also read about a treatment called IPS which might

    I am now totally confused as to who to approach. I emailed the
    Nottingham team to see if they are carrying out further trials; they
    are not right now, but they suggested I ring around a few consultants
    before getting referred. However, getting consultants contact details
    is proving hard without a referral and I don't really know what to ask.
    What treatment should I be looking for? I went back to the optician and
    she has agreed to write me a letter of referral if I can find someone
    who will see my son, but because of his age, she suggested probably
    only the Institute of Opthalmologists in London would be receptive to
    seeing him. I emailed the Institute but have yet received no reply.

    Can anybody out there please advise me what to do next. I live between
    halfway between Oxford and Stoke Mandeville hospitals but according to
    my optician, children over 8 are considered too old for treatment by
    the hospital specialists and are referred straight back to the local
    opticians. I know I can go to a private optomotrist - there is a good
    childrens one in Cheltenham - but would an optomotrist be specialised
    enough, or do I need to see an opthalmologist or orthoptist? How would
    I find the right one and contact him/her?

    I would be grateful for any advice anyone can offer. Having seen the
    research going on, I cannot accept that my son is too old for treatment
    at 11. Also would it be best to wait until he has had his glasses a
    while to see what improvement they can offer to his VA before treatment
    such as patching/ vision therapy is attempted - or bearing in mind his
    age should he be starting treatment ASAP? (For information: currently
    he has been prescribed a +4.25 lens for longsightedness in the poor eye
    with -2.5 astigmatism correction. His actual longsightedness I am told
    is actually +5.00. His good eye prescription is plano.) Many thanks.
    LG, Jul 13, 2006
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  2. Start with full time glasses and see how he does. I think part time
    patching of the good eye might be helpful, even at his age, but just
    when doing things where he doesn't need sharp vision (like tv watching),
    but only when wearing his Rx!

    Consider a contact lens as soon as he seriously wants them.

    w.stacy, o.d.
    William Stacy, Jul 13, 2006
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  3. LG

    LG Guest

    Mike Tyner wrote:

    I have tested my son with magic eye 3D pictures and he can see them
    both with and without his glasses. I presume this must be an indication
    of stereo vision since you can't see them with only one eye. I am
    amazed he can see them with only 20% vision in the poor eye. Do you
    think practicisng with them regularly will help his vision?
    LG, Jul 14, 2006
  4. LG

    Mark A Guest

    I have tested my son with magic eye 3D pictures and he can see them
    As someone who has amblyopia, I can tell you that even with a fairly severe
    case (20/200+ in bad eye), some stereo vision is present.

    When performing certain eye exercises past a certain age, there may be a
    risk of causing your child to be cross-eyed or other similar condition . I
    am not saying that 11 years is past that age (since I am not qualified to
    say), but I would only do what a licensed professional (OD or MD) told me
    was OK for my child. I also would not take advise from someone who has not
    personally examined my child and is able to monitor his progress.
    Mark A, Jul 14, 2006
  5. LG

    LG Guest

    Oh, Ok...I was told his vision without glasses was 6/30 (or 20%) and
    6/12 (or 50%) without. Now I am more confused!
    LG, Jul 14, 2006
  6. LG

    LG Guest

    I think my optician was trying to simplify the results for me by
    quoting them as percentages. I went back to her to get the actual VA
    results after doing the research on the internet. I'll just stick to
    the VA results from now on!
    Does the 85% mean he has 85% vision (after correction) in the poor eye
    working alone or in both eyes working together?
    LG, Jul 14, 2006
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