FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Squint or Strabismus, is a condition in which there is a mis-alignment of the eyes. It means that while one eye is looking at the object the other eye is looking in another direction. This occurs when there is an imbalance of the muscles that control the movement of the eye. As a result, both eyes are unable to look at the same spot at the same time.
In most cases it is difficult to pin-point to a specific cause of the condition. However, in fewer cases, it is secondary to brain diseases, trauma, diabetes, blood pressure, cholesterol, thyroid, etc.
No, not in most cases.
Yes, in a very big way. Use of electronic gadgets like mobile phones, tablets, laptops, should be used solely for academic or professional purposes. Any virtual gaming platforms or activities should be strongly avoided.
Early examination for squint is a must to rule out any sight/life threatening conditions.
If not treated timely or correctly, it may result in:-
- Permanent loss of vision; ‘Lazy Eye’ (Amblyopia);
- Poor hand-eye coordination;
- Difficulty in reading and working on the computer for a long period of time, resulting in poor academic and work performance;
- Cosmetic blemish, causing an inferiority complex and lack of confidence;
- Abnormal head posture;
- Double vision (Diplopia).
A condition wherein the vision of an eye decreases, in spite of the eye being absolutely normal since the connection of the eye with the brain is disrupted. 75% of untreated Squint patients develop this condition. It may happen as early as within one week of the onset of Squint.
The only way to treat this condition is to wear a patch on the ‘good’ eye, for 1 – 6 months. This causes a lot of inconvenience and discomfort as the ‘good’ eye is covered. Surgeries or medicines do not improve the vision.
Poor hand eye coordination results in false localisation of an object in space. When one tries to pour water from bottle in a glass with both the eyes open, the perspective will be correct and the water will fill the glass. However, with one eye closed, the perspective of sight will be incorrect and the water will spill outside.
It can also cause difficulty in climbing down the staircase, walking, and other physical activities. Performance while playing sports is also affected.
As soon as it’s noticed. The period between birth to 3 years of age, is crucial for the normal development of the eyes. If the Squint remains untreated during this period, it may have long term complications and consequences. It’s best to treat Squint even as early as 6 months of age.
After the age of 8 years, it may be difficult to treat the ‘lazy eye’. The treatment is a lengthy process and the visual improvement post this age may not be satisfactory.
All patients do not require Squint surgery. Other methods/modes of treatment are:-
- Eye patch (Occlusion);
- Eye drops/ointments;
- Exercises for the eye;
- Prism glasses
Any combination of the above treatments, may be required.
Contrary to the fear of the term “surgery”, Squint surgeries are generally very safe. It’s certainly safer than a cataract or laser surgery.
The earliest that the surgery can be performed is 6 months of age.
My oldest patient was an 80 year old gentleman. However, the younger the age, the better the results.
If the patient is cooperative, local anaesthesia is given. Local anaesthesia is practically painless. In other patients, general anaesthesia is given.
Almost as soon as the patient is brought out of the operation theatre! However, the patient remains in deep sleep for about 24 hours.
- First 3 hours: Nothing, not even water
- After 3 hours: Only liquids (water, milk, tea, coffee, fruit juices, etc.) at room temperature. Sleep is more important than consuming liquids. Hence, do not wake up the child to give liquids. Liquids to be consumed only in the sitting position.
- After 3-½ hours: If the patient has not vomited then light food (bread-butter, biscuits, etc.) may be given. Do not wake the child up to give food. There should be a minimum gap of 30 minutes, after consuming liquids.
- Dinner: Full vegetarian dinner with no restrictions.
- Next Day: Regular diet/food consumption, including non-vegetarian.
The patient can bathe regularly from the very next day of the surgery.
Sunglasses are not required even when exposed to direct sunlight.
You can start using gadgets immediately after completion of the surgery.
There are absolutely no restrictions. The patient can play any sports/activities, even on the day of the surgery.
It is advised a minimum of 3 days of rest prior to resuming school or work.
Note: For any other queries you may have, please book an appointment for a consultation with the doctor at the clinic or via tele-consultation if you are physically unable to visit.