Strabismus surgery is eye muscle function repair in order to realign the eyes. Strabismus, also called crossed eyes or wall eyes is a deviation of the eyes in which each eye is pointed in different direction, or misaligned. The cause of strabismus is in muscles that do not move the eyes in unison. There are different variants of strabismus. Esotropia is a form of strabismus characterized by inward turned eyes (crossed eyes). Exotropia or outward strabismus is recognized by outward deviated eyes. Upward strabismus or hypertropia represents upward drift of one eye. Opposite of that, hypotropia is downward strabismus. Strabismus leads to binocular vision loss. Binocular vision is field of view seen by both eyes. If not treated, strabismus can result in vision loss or weaker eye. The condition is known as amblyopia, or lazy eye and often affects children with strabismus. Children with the condition require surgical treatment as well as adults with severe form of strabismus.
Prior to the procedure, a patient is given general or local anesthesia depending on the age, health and patient preference. In eye muscle surgical procedure an eye surgeon makes an incision in the conjuctiva, the transparent layer of tissue. This enables the surgeon to access the eye muscle. Using a hook, the surgeon isolates the eye muscles while the eyelids are kept open with the help of small instrument. The procedure can involve either recession or resection. Recession is the surgery to weaken eye muscle and resection involves strengthening of the eye muscle. During the strabismus surgery the eyeball is not taken out of its socket neither is the eye skin cut.
Success RateStrabismus surgery recovery time depends on ability of a patient to recover and whether he or she strictly follows post operative measures. Success rate of this surgery on one eye is 80%. The other eye can be treated several weeks or months after the initial surgery. Of course, success rate of strabismus surgery is higher if the condition has a mild form.
Strabismus surgery risks are mainly related to anesthesia. However, sometimes there may be an eye irritation and swelling. Also scratchiness in the eyes and blurred vision can occur but these problems usually resolve after several days.
Cost of strabismus surgery is between $3100 and $6000. The cost depends on the eye surgeon, type of the procedure, anesthesia and the equipment that is used during the procedure. Strabismus surgery cost is covered by health insurance.