Definition of Diplopia

Diplopia – the medical term for double vision, a circumstance in which a person perceives a single object as a two distinct images- can be vertical (images one above the other) or horizontal (images beside each other).

Diplopia that is present when using both eyes and goes away when covering one eye is binocular; diplopia that persists even when one eye is covered is monocular. Each has different clinical implications. Numerous health conditions can cause diplopia or have diplopia among their symptoms.

Causes of Diplopia (Monocular and Binocular)

Causes of Monocular DiplopiaCauses of Binocular Diplopia
Astigmatismbrain injury (traumatic or stroke)
cataractbrain tumor
dry eye syndromediabetes
keratoconuscranial nerve disorders
pterygiumgraves’s ophthalmopathy
retinopathymultiple sclerosis
strabismusmyasthenia gravis

Diplopia Treatment and Diagnostic Path

The diagnostic path begins with basic ophthalmic examination and neurologic examination. The findings of these exams determine the direction and nature of further testing. As diplopia is a symptom rather than a condition, treatment targets the underlying cause.

In degenerative disorders such as multiple sclerosis and myasthenia gravis, diplopia may persist or worsen as the condition progresses. For monocular diplopia, patching the affected eye may alleviate the double image.


How did you like this article?

Page last reviewed:

About Us