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GETTING INTO ALIGNMENT

The visual defect known as “strabismus” is characterized by eyes that are misaligned and point in different directions. One eye may look straight ahead while the other turns inward, outward, upward, or downward. Strabismus may cause reduced vision or amblyopia (“lazy eye”) in the weaker eye. The brain will recognize the image of the eye that sees better while ignoring the image of the weaker, or amblyopic, eye. This occurs in approximately half the children who have strabismus. Amblyopia is often treated by patching the “good” eye to strengthen and improve vision in the weaker eye. Children who get treated before age five will usually recover almost completely normal vision, although they may continue to have problems with depth perception. All children should have a complete eye examination at least once between ages three and five.