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    What is Nystagmus?

    Understanding About

    Nystagmus refers to rhythmic, involuntary movements of the eyes, characterized by rapid oscillations that can be slow, fast, or a combination of both. These movements can be continuous or occur in episodes triggered by certain positions or movements. They differ from quick, involuntary eye movements like saccades. 

    Nystagmus can impair vision, depth perception, balance, and coordination and may indicate underlying pathology. It can manifest as a transient condition or persistently, and it can be classified as manifest (always present), latent (occurring when one eye is covered), or both. 

    The Bárány Society established classifications for clinical and research purposes, focusing on a standardized language for vestibular disorders worldwide. Pathologic nystagmus can result from various conditions affecting different parts of the brain and peripheral vestibular system.

    Nystagmus FAQs

    You can consult an ophthalmologist, who will also refer you to other specialists for a complete assessment of your condition.
    No, nystagmus is not painful.
    Some cases of early onset nystagmus are inherited. Conditions like maple syrup urine disease and achromatopsia that can cause nystagmus may be inherited. It is advisable for parents to undergo genetic counseling to know the odds of passing the condition to their children.
    Surgery may help with vision improvement but may not be fully able to remove the nystagmus.
    Nystagmus usually affects both the eyes. In cases where it affects only one eye, in most cases, the normal eye is also found to have small amplitude movements.