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A Guide to Strabismus and Crossed Eyes Treatment Options


Mar 15, 2024 | 4 min read

Strabismus, commonly known as cross-eyed or squint, is a condition where the eyes do not align properly. It affects individuals of all ages, from infants to adults, and can significantly impact vision and quality of life. This blog tells the various types of strabismus, strabismus treatment, how to detect it, and whether it can be corrected without surgery.


Types of Strabismus

Strabismus can present in different forms, depending on how the eyes are misaligned. The main types include Esotropia, Exotropia, Hypertropia, and Hypotropia.

  • Esotropia is an eye condition in which one or both eyes turn inward towards the nose. This condition, also known as “cross-eye,” can lead to double vision or amblyopia (lazy eye) if left untreated. It can be caused by various factors, including genetics, muscle imbalance, or neurological problems. 
  • Exotropia is an eye condition in which one or both eyes turn outward away from the nose. This condition can also lead to double vision or amblyopia if left untreated. This condition is also known as “wall-eye” or “divergent strabismus,” and it can be caused by muscle imbalance, neurological problems, or an eye injury. 
  • Hypertropia is an eye condition characterized by one eye being higher than the other. This condition can cause double vision, headaches, or neck pain. Hypertropia can be caused by various factors, including muscle imbalance, nerve damage, or trauma. 
  • Hypotropia is an eye condition in which one eye is lower than the other. This condition can cause double vision, headaches, or neck pain. Hypotropia can be caused by muscle imbalance, nerve damage, or an eye injury.


How to Detect Strabismus?

Early detection of strabismus is essential for effective treatment and to prevent further complications. Some common signs and symptoms include:

  • Misaligned eyes
  • Double vision
  • Poor depth perception
  • Squinting or closing one eye
  • Tilting or turning the head to see better

If you notice any of these symptoms in yourself or your child, it is essential to consult an eye care specialist immediately.


How to Treat Strabismus?

Treatment for strabismus aims to realign the eyes and restore binocular vision. The approach may vary depending on the severity and underlying cause of the condition. Treatment options include:

  • Eyeglasses or Contact Lenses: In some cases, wearing corrective lenses can help correct the eye’s alignment, Particularly if refractive errors contribute to the strabismus.
  • Vision Therapy: Vision therapy involves exercises and activities designed to improve eye coordination and strengthen eye muscles. It is often recommended, especially for children with strabismus.
  • Eye Patching: Patching the stronger eye to encourage the weaker eye to work harder can be an effective treatment, particularly in amblyopia (lazy eye) associated with strabismus.
  • Botulinum Toxin (Botox) Injections: Botox injections can temporarily weaken the muscles around the eye, which align the misaligned eye properly. This treatment is for certain types of strabismus and when surgery is not an option.
  • Strabismus Surgery: In more severe cases or when other treatments are ineffective, your doctor may suggest surgery to adjust the position of the eye muscles and realign the eyes properly.


Can Strabismus Be Corrected Without Surgery?

While surgery is often considered the most effective way to correct strabismus, especially in cases of significant misalignment, other non-surgical treatments may be successful, particularly in mild to moderate cases. Vision therapy, along with the use of corrective lenses and eye patching, can achieve satisfactory results without the need for surgery. However, it is essential to consult with an eye care specialist to determine the most appropriate course of treatment based on individual needs and circumstances.


Finding the best eye surgeon is essential for successful strabismus surgery. Look for experienced eye care professionals who specialize in eye muscle surgery and have a proven track record of positive outcomes.


In conclusion, strabismus is a common eye condition that affects eye alignment and can impact vision and quality of life. Detecting strabismus early and seeking appropriate treatment is essential for optimal outcomes. While surgery may be necessary in some cases, non-surgical options are also available and can be effective, Particularly when implemented early and in conjunction with other treatments. Remember to prioritize regular eye care services and consult with an eye care professional if you suspect you or your child may have strabismus.

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