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Eye diseases

Astigmatism

astigmatismo
Astigmatism affects 30% of the population.
It is often accompanied by other refractive errors.
If it appears or increases suddenly, go to an ophthalmologist.

What is astigmatism?

Astigmatism is an error in the corneal curvature, which, instead of being round, flattens out at the poles. This causes the eyeball not to have the usual spherical shape, but a rather oval one. As a result, the light rays entering the eye are scattered and do not focus correctly on the retina, so that we see distorted objects.

Astigmatism is a very common vision problem in both adults and children. It is estimated that it affects around 25 to 30% of the population, while doubling this percentage (up to 60%) if we also take into account people with very low prescriptions, which do not exceed 0.5 dioptres.

In most cases, astigmatism is often associated with other refractive errors, such as myopia or hyperopia. Unlike these, which can gradually increase over time, astigmatism remains stable throughout the years. Therefore, when it appears suddenly or evolves, it is important that you see an ophthalmologist, as it can be linked to pathologies like keratoconus.

The blurred or distorted vision caused by astigmatism, both near and far, often becomes apparent and affects your daily activities, especially if you have more than half a dioptre.

As a result of this decrease in visual acuity, you may notice headaches, eyestrain and even a feeling of dizziness due to the overexertion made by the lens (the eye’s natural lens, also with dioptre power) to focus and compensate for the defect.

The alteration in the corneal curvature leading to astigmatism usually has a hereditary component, i.e. it is genetically determined.

The use of glasses is the most common treatment, although we can also treat it with contact lenses. The team of optometrists at the Miranza clinics will help you select the most suitable lenses for you, as it is important that they fit your eye snugly so that they do not shift with your blinking and offer you visual comfort.

Another alternative you can opt for is refractive surgery, which allows you to permanently correct this error, either by modelling the corneal surface with a laser or by implanting intraocular lenses. Lenses for astigmatism are known as toric lenses and are specially designed to correct the asymmetrical curvature of the cornea, adjusting precisely to the shape of each eye.