Strabismus

Strabismus is a visual problem in which the eyes are not aligned properly and point in different directions.

 

One eye may look straight ahead, while the other eye turns inward (Esotropia), outward (Exotropia), upward (Hypertropia), or downward (Hypotropia). The eye turn may be consistent, or it may come and go.

What causes strabismus?

 

Strabismus can be caused by problems with the eye muscles, the nerves that transmit information to the muscles, or the control center in the brain that directs eye movements.

 

It can also develop due to other general health conditions or eye injuries.

How is strabismus treated?

 

People with strabismus have several treatment options to improve eye alignment and coordination. They include:

  • Eyeglasses or contact lenses.

  • Prism lenses. 

  • Eye muscle exercises 

  • Eye muscle surgery. 

What is involved with strabismus surgery?

 

Strabismus surgery involves the repositioning of the eye muscles on the eye balls to alter their function and better align the eyes. The goal of the surgery is to help the eyes work together better. This promotes better binocular vision and can eliminate double vision. The surgery does not correct vision in the individual eye. Spectacle glasses will still be needed post operatively if they were needed preoperatively. Well aligned eyes also offer proven cosmetic, interpersonal, social, and professional benefits.

During the surgery, weak muscles can be strengthened, overly powerful muscles can be weakened, and the direction of pull can also be changed. Absorbable stitches are used to reposition the muscles onto their new location on the eyeball. Adjustable sutures involve fine tuning the surgery under topical anesthetic when you have been awoken from the anesthetic. This procedure, if right for you, can improve the success of your surgery. However, this is not always necessary and may not always be possible as it is only done with certain types of strabismus surgery and the patient needs to be very cooperative.

Your surgeon uses pre-operative measurements (orthoptics) to help calculate the amount of repositioning required and even which eye(s) should be operated on for the best possible results.

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