Double vision, or diplopia, is an eye complication that has an entire range of underlying reasons why someone might experience it. It’s like waking up with a dull headache and wondering how you got it. So, before you book laser vision correction Los Angeles, read the list of causes for double vision. However, we must warn you, there are so many possibilities to consider that after reading this you might be seeing things in twos!

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What Is Double Vision?  

Unfortunately, many of us take for granted that when we open our eyes we see, and view our surroundings clearly and in one single image. Normal eyesight happens through a complex process that requires many parts within your eye to work harmoniously without any hitches. 

A person can have double vision in just one eye or both. If you notice that you are experiencing double vision in one eye when the other one is closed, there is very little to worry about. It is still something you should point out to your doctor when you visit laser vision correction Los Angeles. However, if double vision is occurring when both of your eyes are open, it could be caused by a serious disorder. 

To understand how the eye malfunctions, here is a brief and simple biology lesson on the parts of the eye and how they work as one. 

You are experiencing double vision when the injured eye is open:

Cornea: Think of it as the clear window into your eye. Its primary job is to focus light. If your double vision disappears when you cover one eye, this could be a sign of a damaged cornea in the uncovered eye.  

If only one cornea is distorted, you may see only double in that eye. Damage can be brought about by:

  • Scars
  • Dryness
  • Infections, such as shingles or herpes
  • Keratoconus, when the cornea turns into a cone shape

Lens: Located behind your pupil, these help focus light onto your retina. 

The most common lens complications at the laser vision correction Los Angeles are cataracts, which can usually be treated with surgery. 

You are experiencing double vision when both eyes are open:

Muscles: They manage eye movement and help control them so they are aligned with each other. Whenever you notice a person’s eye is not moving in sync with the other, that is due to weak muscles in one eye unable to keep up with the other. When this happens, looking into a direction that the weak muscle is controlling will lead you to see double. Eye muscle issues can be caused by any of the following: 

  • A complication with the nerves that control them.
  • Graves’ disease, a thyroid condition that disturbs eye muscles. This can result in vertical diplopia, which is when the person sees one image on top of the other.
  • Myasthenia gravis, an autoimmune disease that prevents nerves from telling muscles what to do. Early symptoms are double vision and drooping eyelids. 

Nerves: These are the messengers that convey information from your brain to your eyes. Any issues with them can create double vision:

  • Multiple sclerosis can negatively influence the nerves in your brain or spinal cord. If the illness damages the nerves that manage the eye, you may start to see double.
  • Guillain-Barre syndrome is a nerve condition that results in paralysis. The initial symptoms are usually in the eyes, including double vision. 
  • Diabetes can bring about nerve damage to the muscles that are responsible for moving your eyes. This could also result in double vision. 

Brain: The nerves that manage your eyes link straight to your brain, where images are processed. Many reasons for double vision begin in the brain. Here are some examples:

  • Brain tumors
  • Migraine headaches
  • Strokes
  • Aneurysms
  • Extreme pressure inside the brain caused by trauma, bleeding, or infection

What Are The Symptoms Of Double Vision? 

The symptoms for double vision really depend on the cause, but if you have it, you may notice the following: 

  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Droopy eyelids
  • Weakness in your eyes or elsewhere
  • Pain around your eyes, such as your temples or eyebrows
  • Pain when you move your eye
  • Misalignment of one or both eyes, such as a wandering eye or cross-eye presence

 Since there are so many reasons for seeing double, it’s important to find out why you can’t see just one image. 

As is standard procedure, your doctor might use several methods to determine what is causing your double vision. This can be done through blood tests, a physical exam, or imaging tests like computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). 

Also, another effective tool the doctor has on hand is you! Be honest when answering your medical practitioner’s questions which could include the following: 

When did you begin to see double?

Were you involved in a car accident?

At any time recently, have you hit your head, fallen or been unconscious?

Do you feel the double vision is worse after a long day, or when you are exhausted? 

Are you experiencing other symptoms besides double vision?

Do you find you have to tilt your head to one side to view objects properly?

Do you have double vision in both eyes or just when one eye is open? 

Can Lasik Surgery Fix Double Vision?

When you start to experience double vision, it’s important to try to eliminate any potential causes. For instance, stop drinking excessively, walk away from your computer screen every hour to refresh your eyes, or use drops to lubricate dry eyes.

When all is said and done, there are restricted cases in which LASIK can be used to correct double vision. It isn’t a straightforward issue and a consultation from an experienced, board-certified ophthalmologist and respected Lasik surgeon such as Dr. Ferzaad Moosa is necessary. If you are seeing double, contact Excel Laser Vision Institute at +1-866-923-9235 now to schedule a FREE evaluation and see if you’re a good candidate for LASIK treatment!