Loss of alignment of the visual axes or strabismus

Dr. Solana, a specialist at the Oftalvist ophthalmology clinic, explains what strabismus, a pathology that affects the alignment of the eyes, consists of.

We could define strabismus as the loss of alignment of the visual axes, either in all visual directions or in some of them. Its consequences depend on several factors, some of them are the age of onset of strabismus and its characteristics. All cases have in common a more or less manifest aesthetic alteration, but that is not the most important thing; what is really important are the visual alterations. Some of these are the loss or lack of development of binocularity and stereopsis (relief vision) and the possible appearance of amblyopia (lazy eye) in strabismus with onset under 8 years of age.

Treatment of strabismus

Treatment should be aimed, in the first place, at minimizing or preventing visual alterations of binocularity and rehabilitating amblyopia with different penalization techniques and optical treatment. Motor impairment will be treated with surgery or with botulinum toxin in selected cases.

We will resort to surgery when the motor and visual compromise cannot be controlled by optical means, assessing in each case what can be achieved with surgery: aesthetic and visual healing, aesthetic correction, partial aesthetic correction, functional improvements (control of torticollis or nystagmus).

Surgical techniques consist in modifying the insertion of the oculomotor muscles, their length, their route or their power, adapting them to the characteristics of each case.

Risks in the treatment of strabismus

However, we must know when we should not treat strabismus surgically. This will be the case when, for example, there is a high probability of diplopia (double vision) with cosmetic correction.