Amblyopia is poor vision in an eye that did not develop normal sight during early childhood. It is sometimes called “lazy eye.” When one eye develops good vision while the other does not, the eye with poorer vision is called amblyopic. Usually, only one eye is affected by amblyopia.
Amblyopia is detected by finding a difference in vision between the two eyes. Since it is difficult to measure vision in young children, your ophthalmologist often estimates visual acuity by watching how well a baby follows objects with one eye when the other eye is covered.
The condition is common, affecting approximately two or three out of every 100 people. The best time to correct amblyopia is during infancy or early childhood.
To correct amblyopia, a child must be made to use the weak eye. This is usually done by patching or covering the strong eye, often for weeks or months.
It is recommended that all children have their vision checked by their pediatrician, family physician, or ophthalmologist (Eye M.D.) at or before their fourth birthday.