Strabismus (wandering or misaligned eye) comes in many forms including: esotropia (eye turns in), exotropia (eye turns out), hypertropia (eye turns up), and more. Eye turns can be intermittent or constant and can be developmental or acquired later in life due to events like stroke or brain injury. Some strabismus are due to a nerve palsy and subsequent poor muscle innervation, but more frequently, the extraocular eye muscles have full range of motion and are not “weak” – the brain has just not developed typical or consistent binocularity (eye teaming).
Non-Surgical Strabismus Care
Sometimes prescription glasses or contact lenses alone can improve strabismus. Frequently, optometric vision therapy is needed to teach the brain how to use the eyes together as a team. We have helped people with strabismus as young as 4 1/2 months old to 90 years young!
Vision Therapy Co-Management with Strabismus Surgery
At times, strabismus surgery may be recommended, and many of our patients have had strabismus surgery (often several) prior to establishing care with us. We find that pre- and post-surgery vision therapy increases the chance of a successful outcome – and we work with strabismus surgeons in our area to help facilitate that whenever possible. That being said, there is potential for neuroplasticity at any age, and we love seeing people sometimes decades after a strabismus surgery to help the brain relearn to use their visual system more efficiently.
The first step to determine if lenses or vision therapy would be helpful is to schedule a comprehensive evaluation with our team.