Neuro-optometry deals with the diagnosis and management of conditions causing double vision or reduced vision that are not related to conditions of the front of the eye.
Double vision caused by the two eyes not working appropriately together, causes two of the same image to be seen and can be related to nerve disease or muscle disease.
Nerve disease, typically caused from conditions of the brain, brain stem, or peripheral nerves, affects the way the six extraocular muscles of the eye function with those muscles of the companion eye. This can be caused from inflammation, such as multiple sclerosis, stroke, or tumor.
Muscle conditions can also directly cause double vision by weakening of the muscles. Conditions such as myotonic dystrophy or muscular dystrophy can cause this type of double vision.
Neuromuscular juncture disease is a common cause of effective weakening of muscles causing double vision. A primary type of neuromuscular disease is myasthenia gravis.
Neurologic-related vision loss can be related to optic nerve disease or brain disease.
Optic nerve disease includes inflammation or optic neuritis from a number of different causes, such as multiple sclerosis, stroke of the nerve (called ischemic optic neuropathy) and swelling of the nerve caused from increased intracranial pressure. Papilledema is most commonly related to pseudotumor cerebri and can also cause vision loss.
Other potential causes of vision loss, particularly substantial visual field loss, are located within the brain; these include stroke of the visual pathways or tumor.
Some 50 percent of the central nervous system has eye sensory or eye motor fibers cruising through it, so diseases of the brain and brain stem commonly manifest themselves as an eye problem.
Testing of patients with neuro-eye disease includes color vision, visual fields, optic nerve imaging, and visual evoked potential (VEP). VEP measures brain response to visual stimuli and allows evaluation of optic nerve function without the patient responding.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see a doctor. Give us a call today or schedule your general medical exam online!