Astigmatism is a common eye problem that presents as blurry vision. A thorough eye exam will determine your degree of astigmatism and help develop a treatment plan best suited to your needs.
At Focus Eye Care & Surgery in New York, our board-certified eye specialist, Dr. Neelofar Ghaznawi, is a member of the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons. Her extensive training and experience will help you regain sharp vision and better quality of life.
What is astigmatism?
In a normal eye without astigmatism, the cornea, or the clear surface layer of the eye, and the crystalline lens inside the eye are evenly shaped in all directions.
This makes it possible for light to be bent to a single point onto the retina so the images look sharp. The retina is the light-sensitive layer at the back of the eyes that connects to the brain via the optic nerve.
Any distortion in the shape of the cornea and/or lens scatters light rays, causing vision to be out of focus. The result is blurry vision at any distance.
What are the types of astigmatism?
Astigmatism is a refractive error because there is something wrong with how light is bent, or refracted, by the cornea and/or lens. Astigmatism can be:
- Corneal – when your cornea is distorted
- Lenticular – when the crystalline lens is irregularly shaped
Can one have astigmatism and not know it?
Yes. Often, people with astigmatism go to an eye doctor because of blurry vision. But some people have astigmatism mild enough to not cause any major symptoms. They are not aware that they could still be seeing more clearly.
This is why it is vital to have regular eye exams. Get your eyesight checked by our New York eye specialist to find out if you have astigmatism.
Children may suffer from astigmatism and not know it because they still have no experience of clear vision. Have children undergo regular eye checkups to ensure that uncorrected astigmatism does not get in the way of their academic and athletic achievements.
How is astigmatism diagnosed?
A comprehensive eye exam will help determine if you have astigmatism. This involves testing your visual acuity, or how well you read letters of different sizes on a chart. The eye doctor would be able to tell how clear your vision is at certain distances.
How is astigmatism treated?
Astigmatism can be corrected by prescription glasses, contact lenses, or laser surgery. Dr. Ghaznawi is a New York cornea surgeon specializing in correcting astigmatism through personalized lens surgery and refractive surgery.
In blade-less laser surgery, the aim is to reshape the cornea or implant an intraocular lens (IOL) where the natural crystalline lens used to be.
- Refractive Surgery
This procedure reshapes the cornea so it becomes smooth and symmetrical. In keratoconus, the normal dome-shape of the cornea deforms into a cone. If you have corneal astigmatism, this type of laser surgery may be right for you.
- Personalized Lens Surgery
If you have lenticular astigmatism, advanced IOL optics may be better suited. This procedure involves inserting a ‘toric’ implant so the lens achieves a shape that is even with the cornea.
Both laser surgery treatments for astigmatism are done in-office. You are able to go home on the same day.