Can Amblyopia (Lazy Eye) Be Corrected?

Ask a Doctor

My two-year-old daughter has a lazy eye and it breaks my heart. What can we do to help fix this problem? Surgery? Glasses? Can amblyopia even be corrected at all?

Doctor’s Response

Amblyopia, also called “lazy eye,” is a condition in which one eye doesn't see as well as the other eye. It occurs often in children and early detection and treatment can often correct the problem. Amblyopia is treated with a combination of eyeglasses, eye drops, orthoptics (eye muscle training), and eye patching.

The goal of treatment is to make the weaker eye work harder to get stronger. This may include hampering the vision of the stronger eye by:

  • Wearing a patch on the stronger eye
  • Eye drops may be prescribed to put in the stronger eye to make vision in that eye blurry
  • Glasses may be prescribed with a lens that makes the stronger eye vision blurry

In very rare cases where patches, drops, or lenses do not work, surgery may be recommended.

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The doctors and editors at UpToDate. Patient education: Crossed eyes and lazy eye (The Basics). 2 January 2019 .