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What's wrong with my eyes?
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What's wrong with my eyes?

Hey there, thank you for taking the time to read all of this I've been to two ophthalmologists in the last 5 months, still no answers. Here are my symptoms:

The first one: Minocular diplopia or vertical ghost images with far away objects at night, or in dim lighting for the past 5 years.  Some nights I see it, others I don't. It goes away when looking through a pinhole and is present whether both eyes are open or one is closed.

The second: Both doctors had never heard of this, but neither seemed very concerned about it.  This symptom is also monocular and it affects both eyes.  In dim lighting, when there is contrast, like white on black, or black on white, I'll see ghostly doubles following close behind moving objects.  For example, if I wave my arm against a dark background in a dimly lit room, I'll see a second, thin, see-through copy of it following very close behind.  It'll disappear if I focus on the moving hand, but when I look off behind it or to the side, there it'll be.  A pinhole makes this go away too.  Is it just a normal afterimage? I noticed it 5 months ago after experiencing great emotional stress and it hasn't gotten worse. I don't know if it's always been there.

So to recap, a pinhole makes both of my symptoms go away.  Dim lighting and doing near work (like painting) makes them worse.  I've had my eyes refracted twice, no errors.  My doctors think it's just eye strain or stress.  My grandmother developed similar problems at my age and never payed them any mind, but all of this still worries me.

I'm very confused because refraction and a retinoscopy revealed no abnormalities, and yet the symptoms persist but go away with a pinhole.  What does all of this mean?  I can't afford to see another doctor, I have no health insurance.  Is any of this indicative of something serious?  Thanks again.
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Though your refraction is normal, you could have higher order aberration (spherical abberation or trefoil or coma). These cause those symptoms.
Palenopsia is a true problem, but It doesn't appear to be the case here.
Best wishes,
Timothy D. McGarity, Medical Doctor, Ophthalmologist
4 Comments
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Thank you very much, Dr. McGarity. You are the first doctor I have come across that is familiar with Palinopsia.  As soon as I get insurance, I'll get tested for higher order aberrations (I mentioned this term to an optometrist yesterday and she didn't seem to know what I was referring to.).  You are very knowledgeable, thank you again.
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If you enter the word PALINOPSIA in a search engine on the internet, references will be available.
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I have similar symptoms and it is unnerving. I believe there is a Dr. in San Francisco who has been studying this problem.
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