Strabismus and Neuroplasticity

Posted by avmcbellar @avmcbellar, Sep 18, 2020

Has anyone tried to correct their eye alignment through vision therapy or eye exercises? The eye exercises are a form of neuroplasticity.

@avmcbellar

Hi @lynniecat Not all cases will resolve with exercise but worth a try before using surgery. How was the surgery for you immediately after? Did it last or was a revision needed? Thanks for your reply. I hope your strabismus was resolved. I tried the exercises with some improvements but not enough to resolve my strabismus. As a result I am going through the corrective eye surgery and have scheduled an appointment with my neuro ophthalmologist. Are there any specific questions to keep in mind for my surgeon? He told me the procedure will take less than 15 minutes outpatient. It can take up to 6 weeks to heal. The eyes will be red. Toni

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It resolved but double vision returned after 30 years or so … trying to decide my next move.

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@lynniecat

It resolved but double vision returned after 30 years or so … trying to decide my next move.

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I have diplopia (double vision) from an eye surgery that left a muscle in the wrong place. In addition to a prism lense in my glasses, vision therapy has greatly improved my vision. It's work, but I have found it well worth the effort. HOpe you can find an ophthamolgist or low vision specialist who can help you. Good luck!

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@ashby1947

I have diplopia (double vision) from an eye surgery that left a muscle in the wrong place. In addition to a prism lense in my glasses, vision therapy has greatly improved my vision. It's work, but I have found it well worth the effort. HOpe you can find an ophthamolgist or low vision specialist who can help you. Good luck!

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Hi @ashby1947 I believe eye exercises can help strengthen the muscles that are weak in order to bring both eyes to focus on the same image. Did you go to an eye therapist or vision therapy group to get help? Glad you found a solution. Will you have to continue with the exercises at home?

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@lynniecat

It resolved but double vision returned after 30 years or so … trying to decide my next move.

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Hi @lynniecat I am sorry to hear it came back. Do you know the cause? Will a prism in eye glasses help? You may want to see an ophthalmologist since your double vision occurred so long ago. Discuss your options for treatment with the ophthalmologist. The treatment will be dependent on the cause. You may want to go to a vision therapist and ask if eye exercises will help. Sometimes an eye doctor may be hesitant in regards to vision therapy. The vision therapist will do an initial assessment to determine the possibility of exercises helping you. I wish you well.

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@avmcbellar

Hi @ashby1947 I believe eye exercises can help strengthen the muscles that are weak in order to bring both eyes to focus on the same image. Did you go to an eye therapist or vision therapy group to get help? Glad you found a solution. Will you have to continue with the exercises at home?

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Hello again. YOu are right that eye exercises help strengthen the muscles; however, the primary function is to retrain the brain to focus correctly. I saw a vision therapist for about 6 months, and my prism diopter went from 9.3 to 4.5, which is very good. Then the covid stuff hit and I no longer went to VT. Continuing the exercises at home just was not giving me the results I wanted. I went to see a pediatric ophthomologist who primarily works with kids crossed eyes, "lazy eye", and adult strabismus. She was absolutely the best I've ever worked with and gave me the most thorough exam I've ever had. I have several other eye issues for which I see ophthomologists. In general, ophthomologists don't believe in VT, but mine do now! OFtentimes an optometist who specializes in low vision is a good contact. I am fortunate to live in Jacksonville, FL and have access to excellent resources. My VT now is a a computer program that I do 5/wk and plan to continue as I am seeing some progress. Each dipolpia is different and therefore the tx is different. I only have issues with convergence and wear my corrective lenses for reading and computer. No need for TV or driving. I'm 74. I hope some of this was of benefit. Why did your diplopia return after 30 years? Hope this is a good day! Sue

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@ashby1947 nice meeting you. The exercises to retrain your brain is neuroplasticity. Besides vision it is helpful in resolving many other issues by using different nerve paths to complete tasks that were done before. I have strabismus due to muscles in one eye not turning the eyeball downward or inward. My eyes do not align to see the same image. I have tried eye exercises. I currently see a pediatric neuro ophthalmologist and have an upcoming appointment. I will ask if he believes in vision therapy. Perhaps exercises will help me after the corrective surgery. My strabismus never returned. I believe you are referring to @lynniecat. Thank you for your information. I live in central Florida and feel I am lucky to have found a neuro ophthalmologist. There are not many that specialized with my vision problems due to an aneurysm. Wish you well.

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@avmcbellar

@ashby1947 nice meeting you. The exercises to retrain your brain is neuroplasticity. Besides vision it is helpful in resolving many other issues by using different nerve paths to complete tasks that were done before. I have strabismus due to muscles in one eye not turning the eyeball downward or inward. My eyes do not align to see the same image. I have tried eye exercises. I currently see a pediatric neuro ophthalmologist and have an upcoming appointment. I will ask if he believes in vision therapy. Perhaps exercises will help me after the corrective surgery. My strabismus never returned. I believe you are referring to @lynniecat. Thank you for your information. I live in central Florida and feel I am lucky to have found a neuro ophthalmologist. There are not many that specialized with my vision problems due to an aneurysm. Wish you well.

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I go to Mass Eye and Ear so I am lucky it be near great doctors. The thing that bothers me s that we are assuming my double vision is from past strabismus. However I have other health issues. People are not aware that my eyes don’t line up – it’s very subtle. Before surgery it was extreme.

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@lynniecat haven’t your doctors conduct tests to determine the cause of your double vision? I have heard strabismus sometimes coming back. Knowing your medical history, your doctors should be able to provide you an explanation. If you are not comfortable with the diagnosis always get a second opinion. It might mean traveling for a second opinion but it may be well worth it.

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@avmcbellar

@lynniecat haven’t your doctors conduct tests to determine the cause of your double vision? I have heard strabismus sometimes coming back. Knowing your medical history, your doctors should be able to provide you an explanation. If you are not comfortable with the diagnosis always get a second opinion. It might mean traveling for a second opinion but it may be well worth it.

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They think it’s likely it’s just coming back and I will try prism lenses. I have enjoyed contacts most of my life so it’s an adjustment. It prisms do it work then possibly surgery again. It’s worst when I am tired. I find that I cope by closing one eye. It may sound strange but it’s on the lower end of my priorities. However I do wonder if it’s actually a symptom of increased intracranial pressure. I have a ruthless cleft cyst that extends to the optic stalk but does not compress it. Well at least it did not at the particulate time of the MRI.

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@lynniecat your doctor should be able to tell you if a prism will help your vision depending on how the images are twisted between the two eyes. I don’t remember the name of the device but it displays green and red dots. At two different appointments my ophthalmologist had me look through different prisms( 8 total each visit). They offered no help. At my 3rd appointment he used the device to tell me that a prism would not help my double vision because of how the images were twisted. Have your doctors assessed if the nerves controlling the eye muscles of each eye are working properly? In my case, in one eye 2 muscles were not working and therefore could not focus on the same image as the other eye. I do the same in order to see one image. I have to shut one eye or use a patch.
Does the strabismus cause motion sickness or imbalance problems for you? This puts a limit to my activities. I am hoping the surgery will help. My neuro ophthalmologist seems to think so as well. Hope you find answers to decide what is best to do.

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I do have motion sickness – never put it together. Along with a persistent head turn.

Well the prisms worked for a month then the double vision started with the prisms so they thought to strengthen the prisms but my eye started severely turning —after all these years. But now the eye I’m no using heads out vs in.. So it’d surgery now. I worry it’s bring affected be other issues. My childhood strabismus started at 8 – unusual.

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