Also known as: deviation of the eyes, crossed eyes, heterotropia, squint, exotropia, esotropia.

What is strabismus?

Strabismus, or crossed eyes, is a common form of eye muscle disorder in young children, frequently occurring in infants/young children by the age of 3 years, that causes the eyes to not look at the same place at the same time. It can be intermittent or present all the time. It’s classified by the direction the eye turns. Inward turning is called esotropia. Outward turning is called exotropia. Upward turning is called hypertropia. Downward turning is called hypotonia.

What causes strabismus?

Strabismus can be caused by problems with weak or paralyzed eye muscles, the nerves that drive them, or the control center in the brain that directs eye movements. Risk factors include; a family history, significant farsightedness, brain disorders like cerebral palsy, or other medical conditions (like fractures of the eye’s bony wall, thyroid disease and others).

What are the symptoms of strabismus?

In addition to the physical appearance of the eyes, (the eye that wanders or turns out, in, down or up), strabismus can cause vision problems such as double or blurry vision, poor depth perception, closing of one eye or turning of the head to one side, headaches and other problems.

What are strabismus care options?

Potential treatment options to improve eye alignment and coordination include vision therapy, corrective eye glasses or prisms, patches, botox injections if available, or eye muscle surgery. The condition can often be corrected if detected and treated early.

Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP

This page was last updated on: September 06, 2019 03:27 PM