DEAR MAYO CLINIC: My son, 9, liked reading when he was younger. But over the last year, he’s started to struggle with it, and he was recently diagnosed with convergence insufficiency. What is the best treatment for this? Are there some cases that are not treatable? I am concerned that we did not catch it soon enough.
ANSWER: Your son’s situation is common. Convergence insufficiency often is not identified until around the age of 8 or 9 when children begin to read more. A number of treatments are available and, in most cases, they are effective in relieving the problem. In rare cases when other therapies have not worked, surgery may be needed to correct convergence insufficiency.
Convergence insufficiency is an eye disorder that affects vision when focusing on something nearby. To focus when you read or look at an object up close, your eyes need to turn inward together. This is called convergence. It allows you to clearly see the object you are looking at as a single image.