Eye muscle surgery, or “strabismus surgery”, involves either increasing or decreasing the tension of the small muscles on the surface of the eye. These muscles move the eye in all directions.
This type of surgery is typically performed in a hospital outpatient surgical facility. During the surgery the eye is never removed! Rather, a small incision is made on the clear membrane covering the white part of one or both eyes. Through this incision, the appropriate surgery is then performed on the surface of the eye to eliminate the strabismus. The inside of the eyeball is not entered during this type of surgery. Contemporary strabismus surgical techniques involve “hidden” incisions, leaving virtually no visible scarring of the eye surface as a result of this surgery.
When strabismus surgery is recommended for a child, the earlier in life it is done the better the chance of the child achieving binocular vision, or “depth perception”.
Despite having the appropriate surgery, some patients may require further eye muscle surgery in the months, years or decades following their initial operation to further refine their ocular alignment. photograph of child in recovery room following strabismus surgery (two hours after surgery). This child had an esotropia. The tension of the inner muscle of each eye has been relaxed. The ocular surface redness slowly resolves over the course of two weeks.