People usually complain of blurred vision, or children may not pass their vision exam at school before they’re diagnosed with astigmatism.
The doctor may use one or more of these four tests to diagnose astigmatism and measure its severity:
Vision test. Using a standardized chart, patients read the letters they can see from 20 feet away. If your vision is 20/20, you can see at 20 feet what a normal eye can see from 20 feet. If your vision is 20/80, you can only see at 20 feet what a normal eye...
Maybe you're like most people over 40 -- the aging of your eyes
is beginning to change your life in a way you don't like. It was happening to
me. I'd reached the point where I couldn't see the dirt on the kitchen counter
until I put on my reading glasses, and the numbers on my car speedometer were a
So let me flash back to how I ended up, three days after this
past Christmas, wearing plastic bubbles taped over my eyes at the laser surgery
center of Zale Lipshy Hospital at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical
Center in Dallas (UTSW). It may help you decide if this procedure is for
For several years, the idea of LASIK had lurked in the back of
my mind. But until about a year and a half ago, the procedure was FDA-approved
only for nearsightedness, or myopia. This is when the corneal curve is too
steep, causing distant images to blur. When the operation was approved for
farsightedness (the corneal curve is too shallow, causing close objects to
blur), the possibility of having it done myself moved one step closer.
Then last summer, the FDA approved two laser machines for
correcting farsightedness with astigmatism (where the cornea is irregularly
shaped -- more like a football as opposed to a basketball). I did a story about
it, using as my main source H. Dwight Cavanagh, MD, PhD, vice chairman of UTSW
ophthalmology department. I listened carefully to what he had to say about the
procedure; after all, he had been one of the doctors who had conducted LASIK
clinical trials and also one of the researchers on a study comparing this
method with another type of laser surgery called PRK. I also talked with a man
in his late 60s who'd participated in the clinical trial of LASIK at the
medical center, who gave a glowing review.