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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 10599
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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QUESTION FOR OPTHAMOLOGIST Does someone (adult) with severe

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Does someone (adult) with severe strabismus (one eye turning way out) without glasses see normally and straight ahead? Or do they see off to the side with the one eye?

Dr. Rick :

Hi. I'm online and happy to answer your question today.

Dr. Rick :

No. They do not see normally.

Dr. Rick :

First of all, since both eyes are not working together, they do not have normal depth perception like someone who has both eyes working together. Due to this, for example, they would not be able to experience 3D effects at the movies.

Dr. Rick :

Also, the eye that is pointing off to the side, while it may be able to see, is not used for seeing like you are suggesting. In this case the brain "focuses" on the image seen by the eye looking at the object of interest and "turns off", or ignores, the image from the eye pointing off to the side.

Dr. Rick :

Does this make sense to you?

Dr. Rick :

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Let me know if there are there any other concerns or issues you would like to discuss on this topic.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thank you Dr. Rick - So, can you think of any reason that someone like this would be able to pass a driving test ?

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Also, does this basically mean that an individual with a "wall eye" only has use of one eye for the most part?

yes...and no.

It is possible for a Walleyed" person to have, when each eye is tested individually, excellent vision in both eyes. They can use both eyes, sometimes alternating between which eye they have pointing at the object of interest at any given time.

What they don't have is the use of both eyes pointing at the object of interest at the same time and, therefor, poor depth perception etc.
They also don't get to fly Jets for the Air Force ;o)

Is there anything else I can do for you today?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thank you Dr. Rick - So, can you think of any reason that someone like this would be able to pass a driving test ? Why would an adult not have this corrected - Is this condition often not correctable?

If they have good vision (better then 20/70 in most states) they should be able to get a drivers license. While it is correct that they lack "true" depth perception, there are other clues to how far away something is so they should really have no problems driving.

Eye muscle surgery can be done to align the eyes however, sometimes, the eyes just start drifting back apart, especially if one eye has poor vision. Also the surgery can be expensive and many patients aren't bothered by the fact that their eyes look off to the side so why go through the surgery
Dr. Rick and other Eye Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I would imagine insurance would cover that kind of surgery if it is very severe and impacted them socially or kept them from securing employment. In this case it is only one eye and it is severe. Thank you so very much -- Your answers were very thorought and complete!
My pleasure. Have a good day.