General Information about Nystagmus
The most common types of infantile nystagmus are 'congenital nystagmus' (CN) and latent/manifest latent nystagmus (LMLN). Many people with CN are also partially sighted; some are registered blind; few of these can drive a car, most encounter some difficulties in everyday life -- both practical and social -- and some lose out on education and employment opportunities. However, CN or LMLN by themselves do not necessarily reduce acuity substantially and many people with these disorders lead normal, active lives. Those with very poor vision usually have associated sensory deficits responsible for the greater part of their vision loss.
There are many types of adult-onset acquired nystagmus. These are often associated with oscillopsia (the experience of the world 'wiggling'), poor vision, and loss of balance. Often acquired nystagmus is a result of neurological problems and may respond to certain drugs, depending on the cause of the nystagmus.
Below are some observations which apply in MOST cases
Glasses or contact lenses do not correct nystagmus although they may damp (reduce) CN; they should be worn to correct other vision problems. Vision may vary during the day and is likely to be affected by emotional and physical factors such as stress, tiredness, nervousness or unfamiliar surroundings. Most people with CN and no other visual problems can see well enough to drive a car.