Strabismus Treatment Can Prevent Vision Loss
By deborah on January 30, 2016
Monitoring eye health is very important. There are several eye conditions that can threaten both the health and functions of the eyes, and most of these are progressive. That means that, with early treatment, most of these conditions can be effectively treated before the eyes become permanently damaged. This is the case with strabismus, a condition in which the eyes focus on different points, causing them to become crossed or turned. Left untreated, this condition can eventually lead to lazy eye (amblyopia) and even loss of vision. Fortunately, the doctors at Choate Eye Associates offer strabismus treatment so that our Nashville, TN patients can strengthen and train the eyes in order to eliminate strabismus before it results in more serious problems.
What Causes Strabismus?
Strabismus is a condition that is typically present from birth and is, therefore, most often diagnosed in young children, primarily before the age of two. While it is not quite clear why, children with strabismus are unable to align both eyes simultaneously. Instead, each eye focuses on different points, causing the eyes to appear crossed, or causing the eyes to turn up, out, or down. It is important to note that most babies will have crossed eyes as they learn how to focus and control the eye muscles. However, if the condition persists past six months, the eyes should be examined to test for strabismus. Occasionally, older children or adults may also suffer from strabismus. In these cases, the condition is likely to be the result of an injury or another disease, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or thyroid problems.
There are several techniques that can be used to retrain the eye muscles and treat strabismus so that the eyes are able to work together properly. The specific treatment that is offered to each patient will be dependent on his or her unique situation, but in most cases, treatment involves a combination of special glasses, contact lenses, and vision therapy. Vision therapy involves a series of eye muscle training procedures, which are meant to gradually condition the brain to regain control of the eyes. Through the use of computer and optical devices, as well as lenses, prisms, and filters, the brain can regain the ability to control the following:
- Eye alignment
- Eye focusing abilities
- Eye movements
- Visual processing
In rare cases, these non-invasive techniques may not be successful. When these methods do not provide effective results, our doctors may recommend strabismus surgery. This procedure allows doctors to cut and move the eye muscles so that the eye has a straight appearance. Unfortunately, while this surgery will have positive cosmetic results, it does not always improve a patient’s vision, or the brain’s ability to control eye movements. Our doctors can discuss surgical treatment, and its expected results, in further detail if other treatment options prove unsuccessful.
Schedule an Appointment
At Choate Eye Associates, our team of eye doctors offers a comprehensive range of services to help preserve the health and function of your eyes. Whether the health of your eyes is suffering, or you are simply looking for an experienced doctor to perform a routine eye exam, we can help. Schedule an appointment at your earliest convenience to learn more about our services.
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“I am very pleased with the attention I received at Choate Eye Associates. Dr. Choate is very thorough and does a wonderful job of explaining what he is doing and what he is looking for in the exam.” Dianal - Comprehensive Eye Care Patient