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Squint

Squint

Strabismus/Squint is a condition in which the eyes do not align with one another. In other words, one eye is directed in a different direction from the other.

Under normal circumstances, the six muscles that regulate eye movement cooperate and direct both eyes in the same direction. Strabismus patients have difficulty controlling their eye movements and cannot maintain proper ocular alignment (eye position).

The majority of strabismus is caused by a problem with the neuromuscular control of eye movement. An issue with the actual eye muscle occurs less frequently. Strabismus is frequently hereditary, with approximately 30% of children with strabismus having a family relative who has a similar condition.

Strabismus is classified according on the direction of the twisted or misaligned eye:

  • Turning inward (esotropia)
  • Turning outward (exotropia)
  • Turning upward (hypertropia)
  • Turning downward (hypotropia)

Anyone over the age of four months who appears to have strabismus is given a thorough eye examination by our paediatric ophthalmologist, with particular time spent studying how the eyes focus and move. The following items may be included in the exam:

  • History of the patient (to determine the symptoms, family history, medications and any other possible causes of symptoms)
  • Visual acuity (reading letters from an eye chart or observing the visual behaviour of young infants)
  • Refraction (checking the eyes with a series of corrective lenses to measure how they focus light). When screening for glasses, children do not need to be old enough to provide verbal comments.
  • Focus and alignment tests
  • Examination following pupil dilatation (widening) to detect the health of internal eye structures

Our cutting-edge treatment methods are ideal for people of all ages and for a variety of eye diseases, some of which include

  • Contact lenses or glasses: In patients with uncorrected refractive errors, this medication is used. Corrective lenses need less focusing effort and allow the eyes to remain straight.
  • Prism lenses: These are special lenses that can bend light entering the eye, reducing the amount of twisting the eye must perform to look at objects.
  • Orthoptics (vision training): Some types of strabismus, particularly convergence insufficiency, may be treated (a form of exotropia).
  • Medications include eye drops and ointments. In addition, botulinum toxin type A injections (such as Botox) might weaken an overactive eye muscle. Depending on the patient’s situation, these treatments may be utilised in addition to or instead of surgery.
  • Patching: Used to cure amblyopia (lazy eye) in patients who also have strabismus. Control of eye misalignment may improve as vision improves.
  • Muscle surgery on the eyes: Surgery alters the length or position of the eye muscles, allowing the eyes to be properly aligned. This is done with general anaesthesia and dissolvable sutures. Adults are occasionally provided adjustable strabismus surgery, in which the eye muscle locations are modified following surgery.
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