Strabismus, also called crossed eyes, is a condition where both eyes do not focus on an object together and appear as if the eyes are looking in different directions. Strabismus surgery is a procedure which involves correction of the visual axes of the eyes, to make both the eyes focus parallel on an object (binocular vision).
Strabismus surgery is usually performed under general anesthesia as an outpatient procedure. It is designed to increase or decrease the tension of the muscles outside the eye. During the procedure, your surgeon uses an instrument to hold the eyelids open. A small incision is made on the conjunctiva (a membrane that covers the inner surface of the eyelid and the white part of the eyeball) to access the eye muscles. The correction of alignment may be performed by one of two procedures:
Recession procedure – If the eye muscle is strong, the affected outside muscle is detached from the eye and reattached farther back on the eye to relatively weaken the strength of the muscle. If the eye muscle is weak, the strength of the opposing muscle is reduced.
Resection procedure – A small portion of the weak eye muscle is removed and the eye muscle is reattached to the eyeball at the original insertion site to correct the misalignment.
The surgery is considered safe and effective with no major complications. Although complications are rare risks include misalignment, bleeding and infection. You may experience some eye discomfort for a few days and redness which resolves in a few weeks.