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Encyclopedia > Orthoptics

Orthoptics (from the Greek words ortho meaning "straight", and optikas meaning "vision" [1]) is the discipline dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of defective eye coordination, binocular vision, and functional amblyopia by non-pharmaceutical and non-surgical methods, e.g., glasses, prisms, exercises.[1] The goal of orthoptics is to improve comfort and efficiency of binocular function. Binocular vision is vision in which both eyes are used synchronously to produce a single image. ... Amblyopia, or lazy eye, is a disorder of the eye. ...



Orthoptists and ophthalmologists introduced a wide variety of techniques for the improvement of binocular function in the first half of the twentieth century. The first pioneer was Mary Maddox, the daughter of an English ophthalmologist. [2]


Orthoptics is usually studied as a primary degree or as a 2 to 4 years post graduate training course, including both theoretical and practical training. Orthoptists usually work in close cooperation with ophthalmologists, pediatricians, and sometimes neurologists. Clinical Examination Pediatrics (also spelled paediatrics) is the branch of medicine that deals with the medical care of infants, children, and adolescents (from newborn to age 16-21, depending on the country). ... Neurology is a branch of medicine dealing with disorders of the nervous system. ...

The practice of orthoptics has evolved beyond the realm of orthoptic exercises. Orthoptists employed around the world now spend the majority of their day assessing, diagnosing and managing patients with eye muscle disorders. Traditional orthoptic exercise programs are still employed when appropriate. Orthoptists work closely with ophthalmologists to ensure that patients with eye muscle disorders are exposed to a full range of treatment options. These additional options include optical, medical and surgical treatment.


  • Near point of convergence exercises (i.e. "pencil push-ups")
  • Convergence training - Base-out prism reading, stereogram cards, computerized training programs are used to improve fusional convergence.[3]


  1. ^ Cassin, B. and Solomon, S. Dictionary of Eye Terminology. Gainsville, Florida: Triad Publishing Company, 1990.
  2. ^ Helveston EM. "Visual training: current status in ophthalmology." Am J Ophthalmol. 2005 Nov;140(5):903-10. PMID 16310470.
  3. ^ Bartis, MJ. Convergence Insufficiency. eMedicine. January 25, 2005.

See also

An eye care professional is an individual who provides a service related to the eyes or vision. ... Convergence insufficiency is a sensory and neuromuscular anomaly of the binocular vision system, characterized by an inability to converge the eyes or sustain convergence. ... Diplopia, commonly known as double vision, is the perception of two images from a single object. ... Pediatric ophthalmology is a sub-speciality of ophthalmology concerned with eye diseases and vision care in children. ... For the protein Strabismus, see Strabismus (protein) Strabismus, also known as heterotropia, squint, crossed eye, cockeyed, wandering eye,weak eye or wall eyed, is a condition in which the eyes are not properly aligned with each other. ...

External links

  Results from FactBites:
Orthoptics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (152 words)
Orthoptics, which literally means "straightening of the eyes," dates back to the 1850s.
Orthoptics, practiced by orthoptists and optometrists, is eye-muscle training for defective eye coordination, binocular vision, strabismus, diplopia and functional amblyopia.
The scope of orthoptics is limited to eye-muscle training and the cosmetic straightening of eyes.
Agape Optometry Center: Treatment: Orthoptics/Vision Therapy (532 words)
Orthoptics was suggested by du Bois Reymond (1852) and MacKenzie (1854) and pioneered in the latter half of the nineteenth century by the French ophthalmologist Javal.
Orthoptics is often done in lieu of surgery or as a precursor to surgery.
Orthoptics, which literally means "straightening of the eyes," is limited in scope to eye-muscle training and the cosmetic straightening of eyes.
  More results at FactBites »



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