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What is an Orthoptist?

Orthoptists are key members of pediatric ophthalmology and neuro-ophthalmology teams whose primary goal is to provide diagnostic evaluation, understanding and treatment to children and adults. They have been respected members of allied health care in ophthalmology for more than fifty years! Orthoptics combines diagnostic ability, technical understanding and therapeutic skills.

The orthoptist is the liaison between the ophthalmologist and patient, and as such, assists in the development, explanation and ongoing evaluation of a patient’s treatment plan.

Orthoptists are uniquely skilled in detecting, assessing, diagnosing and performing non-surgical management of eye movement, eye alignment, and visual abnormalities such as:

  • Lazy eye (amblyopia)
  • Childhood strabismus (misaligned eyes)
  • Adult strabismus
  • Eye problems associated with neurological delay (Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, etc.)
  • Eye problems associated with systemic disease (Thyroid Disease, Myasthenia Gravis, etc.)
  • Double vision
  • Nystagmus (wiggly eyes)

Treatment Programs
Orthoptists are specially trained to design treatment programs for each individual patient based on their visual condition. Depending upon the disorder, treatment may include but is not limited to:

  • Use of an eye patch
  • Use of various eye drops
  • Eye exercises
  • Glasses with or without bifocals
  • Glasses with prism

Communication with the Physician
Claire provides full documentation of her eye exams for Dr. McCash’s review, so he is continually updated on your child’s progress.