Tunnel vision is a term referring to the loss of peripheral vision, or the vision to either side of you. Those experiencing tunnel vision can see straight ahead, but must turn their eyes or their entire head to see to either side. Tunnel vision can be inconvenient or even incapacitating, especially when it comes to driving. Some people with severe tunnel vision are unable to drive at all.
What Causes Tunnel Vision?
There is no single cause for tunnel vision. Instead, it is a side effect of other conditions, many of which are serious. Some conditions that can lead to tunnel vision include:
- Head injury
- Compromised blood flow to the eye
- Detached retina
Some of these conditions, such as glaucoma, cause tunnel vision that progresses over a period of time. Others, such as a detached retina, lead to immediate loss of peripheral vision or complete loss of vision altogether. Any sudden changes in vision should be evaluated by a doctor or ophthalmologist immediately. If left untreated, many of these conditions could lead to permanent blindness.
How Tunnel Vision Can Be Treated
Depending upon the cause of your tunnel vision, different treatments might be recommended. For glaucoma, drugs to reduce pressure inside the eye will often alleviate the condition and prevent further degradation of vision. However, peripheral vision that has already been lost cannot be restored.
If tunnel vision occurs due to injury or trauma to the eye, repairs to the eye can restore vision. A detached retina must be repaired immediately to prevent permanent vision loss. Other eye trauma should also be evaluated right away, as should head injury that leads to vision problems.
Dr. James Kelly, New York City LASIK surgeon, can diagnose eye injury, glaucoma, and other eye conditions leading to tunnel vision. He can also provide treatment for various types of eye trauma and eye disease. If you suffer from tunnel vision and would like to find out what can be done to help you regain your eyesight, please contact Dr. Kelly at the Kelly Laser Center, New York City LASIK specialists and eye surgeons.