Strabismus

Strabismus surgery is a surgery on the eye to correct the misalignment of the eye muscles. The condition, popularly known as squint or technically as amblyopia, is noticeable in some young children. If you see any such condition, PLEASE rush to your doctor and get an appointment with a eye specialist. This is critical in young children for correcting the problem. If not corrected, one eye tends to weaken and will not develop 20/20 vision over time. In addition, since the optic nerves cannot process vision from this eye, they ignore visual signals to avoid forming an incorrect picture. Result: one will have full vision only in one eye. This is the physical problem and many won’t be affected so much in their daily functioning. But there is more psychological disadvantages as one grows up. They get to be called names easily – squint, cross-eyed and what not. When looking at someone, the other person is confused and some outright even say so causing confusion in the person with the condition. Such incidents on a young mind undermine confidence and instill lack of self-esteem. Thus getting it corrected is a must. Luckily the surgery is done with a lot of efficacy now-a-days. Strabismus will usually not correct vision problem in the eye, but the alignment will make a huge difference for the person. This should be a second option for young children; the first option is to undergo eye therapy to start using the less dominant eye, by covering the dominant eye with a patch at least part of the day or longer. Seek your eye doctors advise. After the surgery, there will be discomfort mainly and a lot of redness. The redness will persist for a week or two and the eye will regain full strength in about a month. The surgery itself involves loosening eye muscle on one side of the eye and tightening (cutting and suturing) the muscles on the other side. The place where these occur depends on the problem and the eye surgeon makes the determination.

I had to stop taking food before midnight the previous day including water. I checked in at about 8:00 AM. After paperwork, I got into the ward and had my first IV setup at about 10:30. The nurse had a hard time finding my blood vessel on both hands. She said I was dehydrated. You should drink as much water as possible the previous day. The weakening of the body hides the blood vessels or they shrink. After which I was waiting for the OR to get free for quite a while. The lady besides my bed was also in for the same reason. She went in at about 11:40. I was told it will take another half hour before I was ready. Finally at 12:35 the nurses pushed my bed down the hallway. I was nervous until then. I was nervous a bit throughout the past 24 hours, but I was looking forward to the outcome. Dr. Christian is an excellent surgeon. She makes you feel comfortable just with her soothing voice and calm self-assurance. As I was wheeled into the OR, I noticed the room was much cooler than the waiting area – I could feel the chill. The male nurse (or was he an assistant) was lively with bright eyes and a nice smile. He asked me to feel comfortable in a sitting position. The anesthesiologist handed me an inhaler linked to a tube and said she will first let me inhale oxygen. I too a breath and one more. I felt myself lightening up.

There was a lot going on in my mind – the thoughts were surfacing. I heard my name called a couple of times and I was regaining consciousness. I heard the nurse say he is getting up. I was in a chair with my eye in a patch. She asked me how I was feeling; I was a bit sore in the eye. It was a bit past 2. I was out for nearly 1 hour 15 minutes and I knew nothing of what happened in between. That is really a boon – you don’t want to know anything such as bright lights shining down on you for they can haunt you later if you aren’t prepared for it. My wife and the nurse walked me out to the car. It was bright outside, but I was glad it was over. A week later, I feel wonderful about my eyes. The swelling in the eye is subsiding. The biggest fear as Dr. Christian mentioned is that of an infection. If that is the case, I will feel not only pain but also will have fever. That hasn’t been the case so far. The eye is still so red, that if it weren’t for one eye, someone will think I am drunk mad. Wish I hadn’t gone through the bearing for over three decades. I just read Abraham Lincoln suffered from slight misalignment; good to know the company.

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