Amblyopia is often called a “Lazy Eye” and implies reduced vision, in an eye which has not received adequate visual stimulation during critical developmental stages during early childhood. Our eyes focus and convert light into the nerve signals which are transmitted along our optic nerves to our brains, where they are processed and interpreted as vision.


Astigmatism is a refractive error which causes blurred or distorted vision. It is one of the most common vision problems. Astigmatism usually occurs when the front surface of the eye, the cornea, has an irregular curvature. This irregular shape prevents light from focusing properly on the back of the eye, the retina. As a result, a person’s vision may be blurred at all distances.


Atropine was originally derived from a natural plant.  It has been safely used for decades by eye doctors to examine young children.  In its full concentration it causes blurred vision and large pupils for many days.  It also slows how fast the eye grows.


Cataracts are opacities that gradually form within the lens in the eye. This cloudiness may reduce contrast; increase glare and eventually causes blur which can’t generally be corrected with spectacles. They may also cause your glasses prescription to change more rapidly than normal in the early stages.


Convergence insufficiency (Ci) is the way we describe a person’s inability to converge and aim their eyes at a near target when doing close work eg. reading, writing, computer, etc. There is a breakdown in the ability to sustain the near alignment of the eyes often due to visual fatigue.


Glaucoma is not actually a single disease. It is the name given to a group of diseases where the optic nerve is being injured and damaged. The fibres die slowly progressively which typically affects the peripheral (sides) vision first. This vision loss generally goes undetected until it is advanced and serious unless it is carefully screened for.


Keratoconus is a progressive condition that results in a thin cornea which causes shape distortions and consequently blurred or distorted vision. It is quite rare (the prevalence is about 1 in 2000) although New Zealand has a high incidence of keratoconus by world standards.


Hyperopia is a common vision problem which affects about one in four of the general population and is often called Long Sightedness. In hyperopia, the eye focusses the image too far behind the retina. This may often result in near blur and, in moderate or high hyperopia, blur at all distances.


Macula Degeneration (MD) is a disease that affects your detailed central vision. MD is the most common cause of vision loss among people over age of 60, signs are present in one in 7 people over 50. MD can make it difficult to read, drive, or perform other daily activities that require fine, central vision.More information…


Meibomian glands are oil-producing glands located in both the upper and lower eyelids. They number about 30 on both the top and bottom lid. Normal glands slowly release specialised oils into the tear film which helps to prevent the tears from evaporating, causing dry eyes and the resultant ocular pathology that follows.


Migraines are a form of vascular regulation abnormality and are thought to be associated with an increased risk of glaucoma. A migraine headache is affects one half of the head and is pulsating in nature. It lasts from 4 to 72 hours; symptoms include:


Myopia occurs if the cornea is curved too much or the eye is longer than normal. Generally if the prescription is increasing quickly it is because the length of the eye is increasing. In other words the eye is growing too big, too fast.


Orthokeratology or Ortho-K involves wearing specially shaped contact lenses that gently reshape the corneal surface during sleep. Upon waking, the contact lenses are removed and the reshaped cornea gives you clear, corrected vision the whole of the following day and sometimes even longer.


Presbyopia usually becomes noticeable in your early 40’s when near detail become more difficult to see. It is typical for this to get gradually worse and you start to move things further away from you to be able to see them comfortably, you also start to struggle to read in poor light.


A pterygium is a wedge shaped growth of abnormal tissue, usually midway between the top and bottom eyelid, on the white of the eye. 90% of them are on the side of the eye near the nose. They are not cancerous and may grow to invade and grow over the clear cornea obscuring the iris.


Retinal detachments are relatively uncommon but are more common in myopic (short sighted) people. When the retina detaches it pulls away from its blood supply and can’t function normally. The part of the retina that is detached will not work properly. Retinal detachments cause a loss of part or all of the vision in the eye which happens suddenly.


Floaters are a common sight for many people. The term is a catchall for the specks, threads, or cobweb-like structures in your vision. The floater is a tiny cluster of cells or fleck of protein suspended in the clear gel behind the pupil, this looks a little like raw egg white. It supports and fills the inner twothirds of the eyeball. The vitreous provides structure and support for the eye which is particularly important when the eye is growing.


Strabismus is a condition in which the eyes point in different directions. Types of strabismus include crossed eyes (esotropia), out-turned eyes (exotropia), or vertical misalignment (hyper or hypotropia). Turning of the eye may be constant or may show up only some of the time. Strabismus should be evaluated and treated.


As the population ages, there are more and more men and women with dry eyes. About 10 percent of the population have dry eye, which tends to be more common in people with fair complexions, dry skin, or rosacea. Antihistamines, oral contraceptives and other medications also cause dry eye, as do environmental factors such as working in artificial climates and on computers.