What is astigmatism


Astigmatism is an anomaly in the shape of the cornea and is linked to myopia and / or farsightedness. In this condition, both near and far vision are affected. Astigmatism is a vision problem present in about 15% of the population generally. It can occur in isolation or associated with other refractive defects.

  • Causes of astigmatism

  • Types of astigmatism

  • Diagnosis of astigmatism

  • Treatment of astigmatism

  • Most used technique

Causes of astigmatism

Astigmatism is due to irregularities in the curvature of the cornea so that refraction varies between the different ‘meridians’ of the eye. On the optical plane, these irregularities mean that the image formed from a point is not exactly the real image. In this way, the astigmatism patient constantly sees blurry images and tries to correct the problem with accommodation strategies, that is, with contraction and widening of the lens.

The lens is a lens that is inside the eye and serves to focus images so that one of the focal areas is placed on the retina, which allows you to clearly see a focused part of the object. When accommodation fails for eye strain, usually at the end of the day, the astigmata sees the blurred images again.

Types of astigmatism

Astigmatism can be congenital, a form that is usually regular, bilateral and symmetrical and that deepens throughout life. There are also forms of astigmatism acquired due to trauma or abnormal corneal conditions.

Diagnosis of astigmatism

The ophthalmologist is the specialist responsible for diagnosing astigmatism. He should check the visual effectiveness in the distance and near vision and obtains the exact degree of astigmatism through a refractometer. This device allows to know the type and degree of astigmatism to prescribe the optical correction adapted to each case.

Treatment of astigmatism

There is no eye drops or other type of pharmacological treatment that cure astigmatism. Depending on the level of activity and the wishes of each patient, the ophthalmologist can advise the use of glasses and / or contact lenses. It is also possible to propose a surgical intervention.

Most used technique

The most used technique today is the Lasik, a method that serves to treat both astigmatism and cases of nearsightedness and farsightedness, even though it presents limitations fundamentally in cases where the patient has diplopias to be corrected.

Photo: © pathdoc – Shutterstock.com

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