Strabismus is best described as the misalignment of both eyes. Approximately 4% of the United States population has this condition. It comes in different forms, with different names, based on the position of the eyes or cause.
Types of Strabismus
There are many different types of strabismus. Some have unique patterns with names like Duane syndrome or Brown syndrome. There are two main categories of strabismus.
- Horizontal Strabismus – Horizontal patterns include esotropia, or crossed eyes. Outward pointing eyes are referred to as exotropia.
- Vertical Strabismus – Vertical patterns include hypertropia, a condition where one eye is higher than the other. Hypotropia describes a pattern with one eye lower than the other.
What Causes Strabismus
Strabismus is the result of problems with the eye muscles. It’s more prevalent in children. Patients with brain disorders like hydrocephalus, Down syndrome, and cerebral palsy are more likely to develop strabismus.
Adults can also experience the condition, which is usually brought on by a stroke. Other conditions can also cause strabismus in adults, including Grave’s disease, trauma, and neurological disorders.
A combination of treatments is usually used to correct strabismus. Patients may be prescribed eyeglasses or contacts and vision therapy, with some also undergoing surgery. The preferred treatment method depends on what caused the condition.
Medications may also be prescribed. The FDA approved the use of Botulinum toxin therapy in 1989 for patients ages 12 and over. This method involves injecting the toxin into the stronger eye muscle to cause temporary paralysis that lasts up to four months. This forces the brain to strengthen the affected eye. If you experience Strabismus, contact Grosinger, Spigelman & Grey – Michigan’s Leading Eye Care Physicians for an appointment to find out how to correct the condition.
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