Strokes and Neurological Diseases

Strokes and Vision
A stroke is defined as the interruption of blood flow to a region of the head or eye. There are six major ways a stroke may affect the eye:

  • Blindness – A stroke can affect one eye only, or, if the stroke damages the back of the brain, both eyes will be affected.
  • Loss of vision to one side – Inability to see on one side of both eyes.
  • Double vision.
  • Inability to understand what is seen.
  • Inability to read.
  • Facial nerve (Bell’s) palsy – Inability to close the eye on one side.

A neuro-ophthalmologist can detect and treat vision problems associated with stroke. It is important that you see a physician immediately if you have any of the above problems after a stroke to stop the progression and to help in your overall recovery.

Vision and Neurologic Diseases
Diseases that affect the nervous system, like multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s, can affect eyesight. Involvement of the optic nerve, which supplies vision from the eye to the brain, or oculomotor nerves, which control eye movements, may be affected by disease.

Additionally, neurologic processes can disrupt the areas responsible for interpretation of visual information.

Patients suffering from neurologic disorders should have regular neuro-ophthalmic exams to look for treatable problems which may affect their vision.