Veronica With Four Eyes

Eye Surgery, Part 2

It’s now been three weeks since my decompensated strabismus eye surgery. My eyes have completely cleared up and are looking normal again.  Since I now have glasses with a prescription (read part 1 here), I can really see a huge difference in my vision from before the surgery. I don’t have a prism in my glasses anymore, so they are more lightweight. My (executive/lined) bifocal has a weaker prescription as well. With all of these changes, I received a new diagnosis for my eye condition.

What is decompensated strabismus?

Decompensated strabismus is a condition where pre-existing strabismus is aggravated by strabismus from another condition. I have had accommodative esotropia, a common form of childhood strabismus, since I was three years old. When I was fourteen, my vision went into a downward spiral. This has been attributed to the onset of Chiari Malformation, a brain condition that causes chronic pain, migraines, and strabismus.

With both my brain and eyes fighting for control of my eyes, my vision got worse than if I had one form of strabismus. Doctors had previously believed I had idiopathic vision loss. However, the diagnosis of decompensated strabismus was confirmed by my neurologist and ophthalmologist following my surgery. This is further evidence that Chiari is a factor in my vision loss, though not necessarily the cause of it.

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What the surgery did and didn’t correct

The decompensated strabismus surgery weakened one muscle in each eye and gave me the ability to see distance and reduce my double vision. I can see about five feet directly in front of me with glasses, and I can recognize faces and text from three feet away. This was more than double of what I could see before. The surgery did not correct my limited peripheral vision, lack of depth perception, or my print disability. I also still need a tint in my glasses to help with light sensitivity, though it is not as dark as before.

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Am I glad I had decompensated strabismus eye surgery?

I am so glad that I had this surgery and that my ophthalmologist was able to improve my vision so much. When I went to get my glasses made, the employees at the store looked at my new prescription and my previous prescription and joined in my excitement when I was able to put on lightweight glasses with pretty purple frames. It’s a whole new world!

Eye surgery part 2 for decompensated strabismus