Lifewatch: Monovision

WILMINGTON -- Generally as people age their eyesight starts weakening, but correcting at least one of the eyes can help in the long run.

Like many others, patient Lori Acker has decided to toss out her glasses and undergo corrective eye surgery.

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, nearly 700,000 Americans underwent lasik eye surgery in 2007.

When Acker, 36 years old, went for an appointment with Dr. Mark Werner, he gave her another option.

"Monovision refers to any procedure which um makes one for distance and one eye for reading. That's the only way someone over the age of 42 can have good distance and reading, its one eye for each," said Dr. Werner.

"I'm just going to need reading glasses, seems like I'm just going to have to deal with it again in the future, by doing it now, I'm being proactive so hopefully I wont have to wear glasses again," said Acker.

Monovision allows Dr. Werner to perform lasik surgery on one eye while leaving the other alone.  The procedure may sound lop-sided, but your brain does all the work when it comes to sight.

"Your brain sort of fuses the image from both eyes. In other words, you're looking at me right now with both eyes, yet you only see one of me. So you're brain is fusing. Even though its getting different images from both eyes, its fusing those images," said Dr. Werner.

According to Dr. Werner, about 20% of patients will be unhappy with monovision experiencing blurriness in the untouched eye.  But, every patient's brain works differently and most are satisfied with the results.

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Reported by Kristy Ondo