Astigmatism is a common eye condition that results in a person losing their ability to see clearly. Translated from Latin, the term means “lack of (focal) point.” If left untreated, it can lead to strabismus and a sharp drop in vision.
Astigmatism occurs due to the irregular (not spherical) shape of the cornea (less often – the lens). In a normal state, the cornea and lens of a healthy eye have an even spherical surface. With astigmatism, their sphericity is impaired. It has different curvatures in different directions.
Astigmatism is often diagnosed during early school or preschool age. Children with astigmatism can confuse numbers and letters that are similar to each other, change their places in words. The child has complaints of blurred vision, distortion of vision. Other symptoms may also indicate the presence of astigmatism.
Symptoms of astigmatism
- Sensation of “grit” and burning in the eyes.
- Redness of the eyes.
- Doubling and distortion of visual images.
- Inability to focus the gaze.
- Difficulties with orientation in space, determining the distance to objects.
- Rapid eye fatigue during such visual work as reading, watching TV, working at a computer.
- Pain in the region of the eyebrows, frequent headaches.
- Without correction, astigmatism will progress and lead to serious complications. Most often, the following methods of correcting this violation are used.
The most common correction method. For astigmatism, glasses are individually fitted with a combination of spherical and cylindrical lenses.
They are very convenient to use, since they form a single optical system with the eye and do not cause distortion.
The safest and most effective method for correcting low to moderate astigmatism. Laser correction improves vision and eliminates the need to wear glasses and contact lenses.
If the correction of astigmatism by optical means is not possible, an operation – keratotomy may be indicated. With it, incisions are made on the inner surface of the cornea of the eye, which subsequently grow together. The founder of the method was the Japanese ophthalmologist Tsumotu Sato in the thirties of the last century.
The famous Soviet ophthalmic surgeon Svyatoslav Fedorov breathed new life into this method. He used new diamond instruments and microscopes, which made it possible to take operations to a qualitatively new level.