The treatment of amblyopia

Strabismus. 2006 Mar;14(1):37-42. doi: 10.1080/09273970500536227.


Recent studies suggest that children with amblyopia associated with anisometropia, strabismus, or both should be treated initially with best refractive correction until visual acuity is stable. This may take several months, and a proportion of children will achieve equal visual acuity with glasses alone. For residual anisometropic and strabismic amblyopia, the initial choice of patching or atropine should involve the parent and the child. The dose of prescribed patching or atropine may initially be quite modest, such as 2 hours of patching a day or twice weekly atropine. Treatment should be offered to children until at least 12 years of age and possibly to teenagers. Ongoing studies are addressing the role of undertaking near activities while patched and the role of atropine for severe amblyopia and for older amblyopic children. Future studies are needed to investigate the best treatment strategies for residual amblyopia, whether weaning treatment is needed at the end of a course, and how compliance can be enhanced.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amblyopia / therapy*
  • Atropine / therapeutic use
  • Decision Making
  • Eyeglasses
  • Humans
  • Parasympatholytics / therapeutic use
  • Sensory Deprivation
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Parasympatholytics
  • Atropine