Strabismus is a pathology in which the eyes do not align correctly. One eye turns inward, upward, downward or outward, while the other focuses on a point.
This usually occurs, because the muscles that control the movement of the eye and the eyelid, the extraocular muscles, are not working together.
Strabismus can be constant or intermittent. Misalignment can also always affect the same eye (unilateral strabismus) or both eyes can be misaligned one at a time (alternating strabismus).
Types of strabismus
There are different types of strabismus, such as:
- Hypertrophy is when the eye turns up
- Hypotropia is when the eye turns down
- Esotropia is when the eye turns inward
- Exotropia is when the eye turns out
When the misalignment of the eyes is of great magnitude and obvious, the strabismus is called “large angle“, because it refers to the angle of deviation between the line of sight of the aligned eye and that of the misaligned eye. While the less obvious eye movements correspond to the small angle strabismus.
What are the symptoms?
The signal is quite obvious, a deviated eye that does not look forward.
In people suffering from small angle strabismus, they cause harmful visual symptoms, especially if the strabismus is intermittent or alternating. In addition to headaches and eye fatigue, some of the symptoms may be inability to read comfortably, fatigue when reading and unsteady or shaky vision.
In normal binocular vision, the position, control and functioning of those muscles for both eyes must be perfectly coordinated. Strabismus occurs when there are neurological or anatomical problems that interfere with the control and function of the extraocular muscles.
Strabismus can be:
- Congenital, meaning that a person is born with it
- Hereditary, suggesting a genetic link
- The result of a disease or a refractive
- Due to an injury to a cranial nerve
How is it treated?
Rapid treatment reduces the risk of complications, such as amblyopia or lazy eye. The younger the patient is, the more effective the treatment.
Treatment options include:
- Glasses: If you suffer from hyperopia or presbyopia, the glasses can usually correct it.
- Botox: this is injected into a muscle on the surface of the eye. Botox temporarily weakens the injected muscle, and this can help the eyes to line up properly.
- Eye drops and eye exercises can help.
- Surgery is only used if other treatments are not effective, but in most cases, it is the only effective treatment for the constant deviation of the eye.
You can realign your eyes and restore binocular vision. The surgeon moves the muscle that connects to the eye in a new position. Sometimes both eyes need to be operated on to get the right balance.
At Vithas Xanit International Hospital in Benalmádena, at the Ophthalmology unit, Dr. Ángel Cilveti will take care to establish an accurate and reliable diagnosis of your ophthalmological condition and the treatment that best suits your particular case.