Treatment of Amblyopia

Eye patches have long been a standard treatment for amblyopia, or lazy eye. But children and parents alike have a tough time following through. Even if the child is initially enthusiastic about looking like a pirate, the patch ordeal can soon get old. It did in my house.

I was pleased to see a study published in the March 2002 issue of Archives of Ophthalmology that tested children with amblyopia at 47 different clinical sites. Half received patching (6 hours a day for 6 months); the other half were treated with eye drops (one drop of atropine a day for 6 months).

Treatment was successful (at least 3 lines of vision improvement, or vision brought to at least 20/30) in 79% of the patched kids and 74% of those receiving drops. Atropine drops appear to be a great treatment choice for some families.

Published on: March 19, 2002
About the Author
Photo of Alan Greene MD
Dr. Greene is a practicing physician, author, national and international TEDx speaker, and global health advocate. He is a graduate of Princeton University and University of California San Francisco.
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