Strabismus is a term that relates to the misalignment of one’s eyes, either inward (“cross-eyed” or esotropia), or outward (“wall-eyed” or exotropia), or up and down. This misalignment can be initially noted by parents to occur very intermittently (but especially with fatigue or illness or day dreaming) or constantly. Sometimes parents notice the eyes crossing inward more when the child is looking at things up close. Alternatively, sometimes parents notice the eyes wandering outward when the child is looking far away.
There are many different reasons for the eyes to misalign and therefore many different treatments. The treatments range from simply wearing glasses to eye muscle surgery. Unless detected and treated, strabismus can result in permanent problems not only with misalignment but also with visual development. Parental suspicion and immediate ophthalmologic diagnosis and treatment are imperative to prevent poor visual development and permanent vision loss (amblyopia) in the deviated eye.