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What is Strabismus?
Strabismus is a visual problem in which the eyes are not aligned properly and point in different directions. One eye may look straight ahead, while the other eye turns inward, outward, upward or downward. The eye turn may be constant, or it may come and go. Which eye is straight (and which is misaligned) may switch or alternate.

 
Esotropia
 
Exotropia
 
Hypertropia
 

Strabismus is a common condition among children. About 4 percent of all children in the United States have strabismus. It can also occur later in life.

Strabismus occurs equally in males and females. It may run in families; however, many people with strabismus have no relatives with the problem.

The exact cause of strabismus is not fully understood. In some cases, strabismus may be due to problems with the muscles controlling eye movement.

Six eye muscles that control eye movement are attached to the outside of each eye. In each eye, one muscle moves in the eye to the right, and one muscle moves the eye to the left. The other four muscles move it up or down and at an angle.

To line up and focus both eyes on a single target, all of the muscles in each eye must be balanced and working together. In order for the eyes to move together, the muscles in both eyes must be coordinated. The brain controls these muscles.

 

With normal vision, both eyes aim at the same spot. The brain then combines the two pictures into a single, three-dimensional image. This three-dimensional image gives us depth perception.

When one eye is out of alignment, two different pictures are sent to the brain. In a young child, the brain learns to ignore the image of the misaligned eye and sees only the image from the straight or better-seeing eye. The child then loses depth perception.

Adults who develop strabismus often have double vision because their brains have already learned to receive images from both eyes and cannot ignore the image from the turned eye. A child generally does not see double.

In some cases, strabismus may result from problems in the brain. Sometimes, a child’s brain may not be correctly combining the two images it receives from the eyes. In rare cases, a tumor may affect how the brain processes visual information. Often children experience strabismus as a result of problems that can be easily treated with glasses.

 

 

 
Chillicothe 50 N. Plaza Blvd Chillicothe, OH 45601 Phone: (740) 774-4434 Fax: (740) 774-4061
Circleville 24200 US 23 South Circleville, OH 43113 Phone: (740) 477-7200 Fax: (740) 477-8349
Grove City 3989 Jackpot Road Grove City, OH 43123 Phone: (614) 801-9111 Fax: 614) 801-1643
Lancaster 676 E Main Street Lancaster, OH 43130 Phone: (740) 681-1911 Fax: (740) 654-7109
Portsmouth 1400 Gay Street Portsmouth, OH 45662 Phone: (740) 351-0999 Fax: (740) 351-0989
Washington Court House 420 East Court Street Washington Court House, OH 43160 Phone: (740) 335-7200 Fax: (740) 335-7200
Waverly Waverly 505 W Emmitt Ave., Ste. 4 Waverly, OH 45690 Phone: (740) 941-3937 Fax: (740) 941-3786
Wilmington 721 W Main Street Wilmington, OH 45177 Phone: (937) 382-7724 Fax: (937) 382-7726

Eye Specialists of Ohio provide Lasik and cataract eye surgery in Lancaster, Chilicothe, Circleville, Grove City, Portsmouth, Washington Court House, Waverly and Wilmington.

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