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Nutritional Optic Neuropathy

What is Nutritional Optic Neuropathy?

Nutritional optic neuropathy is visual impairment that occurs when nutritional deficiency damages the optic nerve, which carries visual information from the eye to the brain.

Symptoms of Nutritional Optic Neuropathy

A change in color vision, or dyschromatopsia, is often the first symptom of nutritional optic neuropathy. You may notice that certain colors, particularly red, are less vivid, or you may have a generalized loss of color perception.

Vision loss is painless and progressive, mostly affecting central vision and occurring in both eyes simultaneously. Total blindness or vision limited to light perception is rare.

Vision problems can be associated with many other health conditions. Contact a medical professional if you are having symptoms.

Treatments for Nutritional Optic Neuropathy

Treatment for nutritional optic neuropathy may include vitamin supplementation, but results vary per person.

Additional Information

Who gets nutritional optic neuropathy?

Nutritional optic neuropathy can affect anyone. It is mainly caused by a vitamin deficiency. Alcohol and tobacco use may increase a person’s risk of developing the condition.

How is nutritional optic neuropathy diagnosed?

The following may be used to diagnose nutritional optical neuropathy:

  • Eye examination
  • Medical history
  • Imaging tests
  • Blood tests
  • Electrophysiological tests

Additional Resources

National Institutes of Health | Toxic Optic Neuropathy

Request an Appointment with a Nutritional Optic Neuropathy Specialist