Houston Eye Center: What are the Three Main Types of Refractive Error

There are a variety of eye problems that affect millions of people around the world today. The most common type of eye problem that we have today is refractive error. If you see someone who wears prescription glasses or contacts they are sure to suffer from a form of refractive error. Those who suffer from refractive error may find other solutions in refractive surgery particularly Lasik Surgery which uses a laser that is aimed at a person’s cornea with the goal of reshaping it to correct vision. Patients who undergo lasik eye surgery have their vision made clearer and may not even need corrective lenses.

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Now a refractive error is the result when incoming light is not properly focused by the cornea onto the retina causing the person to have blurry vision depending on the person’s distance from the subject. This happens when the person’s corneas have an irregular shape. The problem of refractive error is quite broad and it can actually be specified into three main types. Today we are going to learn more about these three main types and understand how they can be treated through lasik eye surgery?

1.) Myopia – Also known as nearsightedness, those who suffer from myopia have a cornea which is shorter than normal. This results in the mismatch of the eye length and the person’s focus. Because the cornea is too short the focus of light is actually in front of the retina instead of on it. In order for people with myopia to see objects clearer they would have to move in closer to the object.

Nearsighted people wear glasses that enlarge their vision making objects appear closer so that there isn’t a need to move in closer to see clearer. Lasik Surgery attempts to normalize the shape so that focus may be directed properly to the retina.

2.) Hyperopia – Also known as farsightedness, those who suffer from hyperopia have a cornea which is longer than normal. Just like myopia this results in a eye length and focus mismatch only the in hyperopia, the focus is actually behind the retina. In order to see clearer, farsighted people have to move further from an object.

The glasses or contacts which are designed for farsighted people actually make their vision appear smaller so that the person wouldn’t have to move further to see clearer. Lasik eye surgery removes some tissue so that the cornea will be in the normal shape.

3.) Astigmatism – Astigmatism is the result when people have a distorted cornea or lens which is more complex than myopia or hyperopia. People who suffer from astigmatism may see multiple images as a result of the corneas and lens not able to focus on the image resulting in a blurry vision.

The shape irregularities in the corneas of people who suffer from astigmatism can be treated through lasik eye surgery so that the person may see much clearer.

So these are the three main types of refractive errors that many people suffer from. If you or someone you know suffers from any of these, consider heading to a Houston Eye Center to get quality eye treatment service from skilled surgeons and top facilities.

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