Strabismus and Amblyopia

Pediatric Ophthalmologist Kenneth Wright, MD, shares advice for parents on the causes of Strabismus and Amblyopia in children, how to best treat it, and why early early detection is so important
Causes & Treatment For Strabismus and Amblyopia In Children
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Strabismus and Amblyopia

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Strabismus and Amblyopia are terms that we often hear in Pediatric Opthalmology. It's a common problem in children. In fact, Strabismus or Amblyopia will occur in almost 2 to 3 percent of the population. Strabismus means, misalignment of the eyes. Normally, our eyes focus on a target. If an eye turns in, turns out, or even turns up, that's Strabismus, misalignment. Amblyopia means that the visual development didn't occur properly because of a blurred image. Usually, if an eye turns in all the time, that also can decrease the brain development from that eye and the vision can be low. Amblyopia is poor vision because the brain didn't develop that high resolution because it didn't receive proper input. Both Strabismus and Amblyopia should be treated early. The earlier you treat, the better the chances that you are going to get a good result. The better the chances you are going to stimulate brain development. What I hate to see is a child in my practice who has had crossed eyes for one or two years. That long standing crossing, the brain now has been stimulated abnormally and, in many cases, I can't get that back. I can't get their eyes together anymore because they are so one-eye dominant. You may hear about patching. Do you ever hear of a child with an eye patch? We patch the dominant eye to make the lazy eye, their amblyopic eye, the eye that doesn't see well, be stimulated. Children with Strabismus, if they really have strong dominance for one eye, we patch the non-dominant eye to stimulate the non-dominant eye. If they child has equal dominance in the eyes, we don't need to patch them. You may have a child that may be patching, you are patching to switch the dominance because you have one eye that is taking over.

Pediatric Ophthalmologist Kenneth Wright, MD, shares advice for parents on the causes of Strabismus and Amblyopia in children, how to best treat it, and why early early detection is so important

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Kenneth Wright, MD

Pediatric Ophthalmologist

A caring physician, Dr. Kenneth Wright is devoted to the health of children’s eyes. He is an internationally respected pediatric ophthalmologist, and is included in “The Best Doctors in America” and “Who’s Who in Medicine and Health Care.”  Dr. Wright is a Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology at the USC Keck School of Medicine.  He has developed novel surgical techniques for pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus.  Dr. Wright received his medical degree from Boston University and fellowships in pediatric ophthalmology and adult strabismus at Johns-Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, and Children’s Hospital, Washington, DC.  Following his fellowships, he then accepted a full-time faculty member position at USC School of Medicine and Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles where he served for 10 years.  He was later appointed Director of Pediatric Ophthalmology at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, before returning home to Los Angeles to establish a pediatric ophthalmology and strabismus center of excellence.  

Dr. Wright has authored of over 100 published scientific papers, seven textbooks including his renowned textbook, Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus and has lectured worldwide.  He founded the non-profit Wright Foundation with a mission to reduce blindness and suffering in children with eye disorders through research, education, and clinical care. He has established a pediatric eye clinic for underprivileged children.  Important to the Wright Center is the principle that patient care always comes first.  

An interesting personal note is that Dr. Wright’s youngest son developed crossed eyes as an infant requiring surgery and Dr. Wright operated on his own son.  The outcome was excellent and years later his son served in the United States Marine Corps as a top marksman.

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