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Double Vision
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Double Vision

Hi.. I have some pretty severe double vision.. I can't read nothing on a road sign at night even when i'm close up to it. I have already had a dialated refraction exam and was told glasses would not help.. which I don't understand because I see 20/20 with the "pinhole".

So I was wondering.. what can I do for my double vision personally? I have been diagnosed with an astigmatism.. in both eyes.. so are there eye excersices I could do?

I have also read patching one eye might help... but is this safe? and if it is completely safe how long should I leave my eye patched for and which eye should I choose?

And is there any chance my double vision could resolve on its own? and if so about how long does it take? I have had Vertical Binocular Diplopia for about 6 or 7 months.

Thank You
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Sorry, the eye MDs here missed this conversation thread. Reading through it it seems like you guys have this figured out on your own.

First you must distingused between blurred vision, ghosting and true double vision.

Vision that clears up when you look through a pinhole generally means that the problem is refractive and glasses will help a lot. If it does not clear up it suggests eye pathology. Some cases of cataracts clear with pinhole but don't clear with glasses.

Astigmatism can cause blurred vision and ghosting but will not cause true double vision. ghosting can be due to uncorrected astigmatism but also corneal disease, cataracts and macular pathology.

True double vision is just that you see two of everything at least in some field of vision. That is that many cases of double vision will only occur with looking to the left, right, up or down but not all or may be only at distance or only at near.

True double vision of sudden onset requires a vigorous work up as there are many serious things that can cause it.

All blurred vision, ghosting and double vision can usually be either cleared up or at least helped with a variety of things from as simple as a pair of glasses to as complicated as eye muscle surgery or cataract surgery.

Brandon you should be able to be helped. I would see a strabismus specialist if you are having true double vision if ghosting then another ophthalmologist perhaps a cornea specialist. You can find one near you at www.aao.org

Are there any other aspects of this tread that are unanswered?

JCH III MD

11 Comments
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152264_tn?1280358257
I have vertical ghosting (not really double vision, but same principle, I believe) in each eye separately (doesn't go away when I cover one eye or the other).

Mine, however, only occurs after a few minutes or so of reading LOOKING DOWN. Doesn't happen when I read looking straight ahead, like on a computer. Also it happens spontaneously when I'm very, very tired (sleep-deprived).

Mine also resolves through the pinhole.

The ophthalmologist and neuro-ophthalmologist could not explain this. But the ophthalmologist DID give me some reading glasses with some odd prescription (don't ask me what it is, because I don't know--all he said was that when I went to get it filled they would think it was for bifocals but it wasn't), and these glasses DO prevent the ghosting from occurring!

If I've been reading (with eyes down) without the glasses and I put them on, the ghosting improves greatly as soon as I put the glasses on.

Try another ophthalmologist!
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152264_tn?1280358257
Just bumping this up in case it was missed; maybe one of the doctors can give you some advice.
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I suspect that it was optometrist who told you that your double vision can't be helped.  I don't think you should accept this.  (An optometrist told me the same thing.  I was also told--erroneously--that my double vision was normal!)  You need to be seen by an experienced ophthalmologist, who can diagnose what is causing your double vision and propose a treatment plan.  Pediatric ophthalmologists tend to know the most about binocular vision problems, and most of them also treat adults.  Please don't wait for your problem to resolve on its own.  Perhaps the forum doctors have further suggestions.  Good luck!
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I agree with Jodie--the optometrists shrugged off my ghosting vision problem and told me wrong things about it. It was the ophthalmologist who helped me.

Nancy T.
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Avatar_f_tn
With this new forum format, I think forum doctors missed your post.  I'll move it to the top again, but if you don't get a response from one of the forum doctors, you might want to post again on the other eye forum.
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Nancy T I have that too, everything you said word for word!! I never had that until I had migraines.
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152264_tn?1280358257
Really!? What does your ophthalmologist say?? If this is not so terribly uncommon, why haven't the ophthalmologists heard of it?? Mine even called in a neuro-ophthalmologist, who also said he didn't know what this was.

Describe your ghosting? What makes it occur? What helps it? Does it occur only after reading? Reading straight ahead? Reading with eyes downward?

Is it worse when you're tired? Does it occur spontaneously (without reading) when you're sleep-deprived? Does one eye ever feel "funny," like oddly "weak," even though your eye stays open normally--but you feel like you need to keep pulling it open even though you don't?

Does your ghosting go away when you tip your head upward to a certain angle, or when you squint your eyes partway closed? Mine does.

Did you get glasses to help it?

I am a migraineur, but I don't think this has anything to do with migraines. The ghosting occurs invariably with reading looking downward, not related to migraine activity (which is very minimal in my case anyway).

I'm really curious about this.

However, I feel bad about having posted so many replies here--I think the doctors missed Brandon's questions.

Nancy T.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hey.. I have that ghosting too.. mine is pretty severe.. I have ghosting and trailing vision.. mainly when im shifting my eyes or when im walking towards an object.. i also used to get positive afterimages.. where i would be outside on a bright day then i would come inside and close my eyes and i could still see everything i saw outside in full color! ..yes the opthamologist said glasses may help for my double vision.. so he sent me back to the other people to get me fitted for glasses.. after that they told me they wouldnt help.. so i went home.. a few days later i got mad.. and called up there and demanded that they send me my prescription in the mail.. they said it would only have minimal effectiveness.. I said I don't care.. so they sent it too me.. and I'm going monday and getting my prescription filled. :)   ...and i've also been to the optometrist, opthamologist, and nuero-opthamologist, and been seen by a vitreo-retinal specialist.. with no bad findings.. so I think that could only be good news... but I do need to be seen by a neurologist.. stress also seems to make everything worse.. so I try not to stress as much.. which is difficult because im a hypochondriac.. but im trying. :)  
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152264_tn?1280358257
Brandon--sorry you have had so much trouble--sounds like you've had quite a time trying to get it figured out. Actually the symptoms you're describing don't sound like mine. I'm sorry you've gotten what sounds like conflicting information from your doctors. Perhaps you should talk to your main eye doctor and ask him or her to help you understand the situation better. In any case, if they've suggested you see a neurologist, I would definitely follow up on that--there are many causes of eye problems and perhaps the neurologist will find something. (And perhaps not! Not everything can be explained, let me tell you that from personal experience! But even when something can't be explained, often it CAN be helped.)

If your ghosting or double vision clears up through the pinhole, I don't understand why they think glasses won't help you. There must be a reason--ask them to explain things again (or more clearly) to you, and listen carefully with an open mind.

Dr. Hagan gave you some good advice re whom to see next. And do follow up with the neurologist if you've been advised to. Best of luck!

Nancy T.
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