What Are The Causes Of Strabismus And Is There Anything I Can Do To Prevent It?

Question: What are the causes of strabismus and is there anything I can do to prevent it?

Answer: Childhood strabismus is not fully understood. Most children who develop an esotropia, or crossed eye or wandering eye during childhood, are neurologically normal. There are usually no associated developmental delays in children who have strabismus. However, there are certain conditions such as cerebral palsy and Down syndrome in which developmental delay may co-exist with an increased incidence of childhood strabismus. More rarely, cranial nerve palsies, or difficulties or problems with the cranial nerves that innervate or supply the stimulus to the muscles of the eye, can result in a childhood strabismus.

Currently we do not have preventive measures for childhood strabismus except to address or eliminate some of the diseases in which strabismus is found more commonly. Also, premature birth can be associated with an increased incidence of strabismus, and any measures that can reduce the incidence of premature birth will have a major effect on reducing the incidence of strabismus in childhood.