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double vision

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Diplopia is the occurence of multiple images from one object in the visual field. It can only occur if binocular vision has developed.

  • binocular double vision may be caused by disorders affecting the eye muscles or other conditions such as brain tumours, diabetes, thyroid disease or severe head injury
    • this type of double vision may stop if either eye is covered
  • occasionally, people may have monocular double vision (one eye only) - see linked item
  • treatment of binocular double vision depends on its underlying cause and prognosis
    • may include wearing a patch over one eye, use of filters on spectacles, use of an opaque contact lens in one eye, eye muscle botulinum toxin injection or eye muscle surgery. Some patients, particularly children, may be able to ignore the double vision
    • implantation of an opaque intraocular lens (IOL) for intractable double vision is technically similar to standard cataract surgery
      • is indicated only in highly selected patients
      • should only be offered implantation of an opaque IOL when all alternative treatment options for their double vision have proved inadequate (1)



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