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Eye and Vision Care

Double Vision



Hi, recently I have experienced double vision in the background when focusing on an object closer to me and vice versa. I have seen an optometrist and my eyes are healthy. I have also had blood work done that came back normal. Do you know what this could be?


Seeing double any distance other than the distance you are fixating on is a normal visual finding called Physiological diplopia.  Normally the brain suppresses this information, but you can always make yourself aware of it (e.g., hold one pencil 10 inches in front of your face and another 20 inches in front of your face, whenever you look at one pencil, the other will appear double).  Your visual system uses this information to determine if objects are closer or father away than the object you are looking at. This then allows you to move your eyes appropriately to look at another object or to reach accurately to touch an object.  All binocular people have physiological diplopia unless they have a condition that causes them to suppress one eye.

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Response by:

Michael  Earley, OD, PhD, FAAO Michael Earley, OD, PhD, FAAO
Assistant Dean for Clinical Services
Professor of Clinical Optometry
College of Optometry
The Ohio State University