Yes. Recent treatment advances allow most adults with misaligned eyes to have surgical correction [See figure 1].
No. Eye alignment surgery improves eye function in most adults and can lead to social and economic benefits.
Although eye muscle surgery is reconstructive (not cosmetic), one should check with the insurance carrier to determine their specific policy.
No. However, every surgical procedure has some risks. For strabismus surgery, the most common risks are residual misalignment and double vision (usually temporary). Fortunately, the more serious risks of anesthetic complications, infection, bleeding, retinal detachment, and decreased vision are rare. Health risks vary with the general health of the individual. For those in poor health, surgery under local anesthesia (instead of general anesthesia) or botulinum toxin injection may be considered.
Most individuals have significant improvement in eye alignment with one surgery. Occasionally the surgery is only partially successful and additional surgery may be indicated.
Discomfort after eye muscle surgery is usually a foreign body sensation in the eye, lasting several days. Over-the-counter pain medication often reduces the discomfort, although stronger medication is sometimes prescribed. Most patients return to full activity in several days. Some surgeons limit swimming and heavy physical activity for several weeks after surgery.
Eyes can be straightened at any age and should be considered as a treatment alternative if it enhances quality of life.
Yes. Recent studies confirm these observations. Misaligned eyes can hinder social interaction, self-confidence and employment opportunities. All individuals deserve straight eyes if possible.
Eye alignment surgery is usually performed as an outpatient procedure although the need for hospitalization varies depending upon general health and surgeon preference . Following surgery most individuals return to nearly all normal activities within a few days.