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Lazy? Or wandering eye in toddler... Advice please!

(18 Posts)
Flowerface Tue 18-Oct-11 20:08:32

My 23 month old DD has had a lazy (I suppose) eye for about four months. It used to go inwards (so she was cross-eyed on one side, IYSWIM) just when she was reading or looking at something close up. We were referred to an opthamologist who tested her eyes and said that her sight was fine and equal, and neither eye was 'lazy' so it must just be a developmental thing.

But, it's since got much worse and is now very noticable all the time. She has another appointment with the consultant in Dec, but in the meantime does anyone have any ideas what it might be, or experience in this? What are the likely options? I really hate the idea of her having to wear a patch, though I know it's not the worse thing in the world (PFB alert!). My grandfather and cousin both have/had similar things with their eyes but I don't know exactly what was wrong. My cousin's is still a bit funny (for want of a more technical term... ) at the age of 20.

Is this common? Does anyone have any experiences or advice to share? I am fretting about it disproportionately...

Effjay Tue 18-Oct-11 20:15:04

My DS1 (who is now 6) has a squint. I can barely notice it, but it does start to turn in when he is tired. I would go back to your GP and get a another referral for it to be checked out. I've been told by the hospital that it is really important to catch and treat it before the age of 7/8 as that is the best time to correct/improve if possible.
DS1 loves his glasses (he may not need them past age 7/8 - we're waiting to see) and 8 others in his class of 30 now wear glasses. When he first had them, I was a bit sad that he'd need to wear them - particularly as he's such an active, rough and tumble boy. However, he just doesn't notice them, and neither do his friends. It's just not a big deal for them at this age.

lucky24 Tue 18-Oct-11 21:08:41

Lazy eye runs in my family too, i had a patch as a toddle and my eyes look straight, the sight in the lazy eye is not as good as the other eye but i don't need glasses. (i dont remember having the patch so dont think i must of only had it for a while as a toddle)

My cousin still has a lazy eye as her mum wasn't strict with her and didn't make her wear the patch when she should have done so if your DD is given a patch to wear you need to stay strong and make her wear it

Clayhead Tue 18-Oct-11 21:11:56

My ds has an eye condition which meant we had to attend the paediatric eye clinic for several years. He never needed a patch but I was so impressed with them - they have all kinds of designs and the children loved picking them.

The only time my ds got upset was when he was about 6 and told he DIDN'T need glasses - most of the other children there had them and he was sure he'd be next...

madwomanintheattic Tue 18-Oct-11 21:14:07

if it's noticeable, go back. call the opth team and ask for an earlier/ cancellation appointment - you need to tell them it has worsened.

squints are really common (esp where there is family history, which there obviously is) and as long as they are treated early (yes, usually with patching if it's just one eye) will often disappear.

if it's ignored, it gets more difficult to treat.

dd2 had/ has an alternating converging squint (so not suitable for patching) - she had corrective surgery last year at 7. usually it's done much sooner.

as you have family history, you should also find out what the dx was for the affected relatives, to share with your opth team.

cloudofpink Tue 18-Oct-11 21:15:25

May be worth contacting the MNetter wo started this thread. www.mumsnet.com/Talk/childrens_health/1291818-Lazy-eye-squints-glasses-etc

madwomanintheattic Tue 18-Oct-11 21:15:35

oh, should add, she's worn glasses since about 2 in an attempt to correct it without surgery. v cute.

workshy Tue 18-Oct-11 21:21:16

my daughter wore glasses from 18months-7yrs and now no longer needs them

patching is really effective if done early and before school is ideal -they way they work is by covering the strong eye to make the 'lazy' eye work harder and strengthens the muscles

they don't wear them constantly and they have some really nice designs now

I had a terrible squint as a child -both eyes, no hope of patching, no 3-d vision
7 opperations later (first one before I was a year old) and my eyes are beautifully straight and no one would ever know unless I told them

trust the experts smile

Seona1973 Tue 18-Oct-11 21:46:48

you would only get patching treatment if the sight in one eye was poorer than the other - it is used to improve the sight in the weaker sighted eye. A lazy eye is where the sight in one eye is different to the other and is not the same as a squint although a lazy eye can cause a squint. If the sight in her eyes is equal and she is not long/short sighted then surgery may be used to straighten the eye.

DD had a squint and had a lazy eye - she turned out to be long sighted too. She wore glasses from 18 months, had patching treatment to improve the sight in her lazy eye and had an eye op to improve the squint as it was still noticeable even with her glasses on. She will probably always need glasses (is nearly 8 now).

Flowerface Wed 19-Oct-11 08:40:59

Thanks for all your advice. They said that the sight was equal in both her eyes - though clearly it's quite difficult to tell with an uncooperative toddler - and that's why they didn't patch or anything then. Surgery is even more terrifying...

Bunbaker Wed 19-Oct-11 08:53:17

You need to go back. Patching is a much better alternative to surgery and if done early enough is pretty effective. So you need to get over the idea of not wanting to use an eye patch as these things don't get better on their own.

Seona1973 Wed 19-Oct-11 10:05:05

patching is done to make eyesight equal so if the eyes are equal them patching is pointless. I would go back and see what they say - her eyes may have worsened or the squint may just be consmetic - only one way to find out.

Flowerface Wed 19-Oct-11 14:50:37

Oh yes I know it won't get better on its own (though they did wonder if it might, if it was just a developmental stage). They are seeing her again in Dec anyway. I will see if I can get the appointment brought forward. Just wanted to hear of any advice or stories out there. Even the most minor medical intervention can seem traumatic if you are a hormone-riddled PFB-culprit...

madwomanintheattic Wed 19-Oct-11 14:54:59

flowerface, her eyesight was equal when she was last checked.

if the squint is now worsening, there is a chance it is no longer equal.

every eye guy we've ever seen has said if a squint worsens, go back. the longer it is left, there is a chance that the 'unused' eye will weaken further, which might mean longer patching is needed on the other eye to strengthen the one that turns.

call them. and check.

madwomanintheattic Wed 19-Oct-11 14:55:55

and why would it be a developmental stage if adult members of your members still display some of the same symptoms?

Flowerface Wed 19-Oct-11 15:12:28

Who knows, that was her hypothesis not mine. I told her about the family link, but I suppose that doesn't conclusively mean that it's that in this instance. I will try to get an earlier appointment. Just to be clear, I wasn't suggesting not going back, or doing nothing. But this has been useful in clarifying that we need to get seen again sooner.

merrymonsters Wed 19-Oct-11 16:04:55

My son had quite a bad squint, which came on suddenly when he was 5. The consultant said that he'd probably always had an unnoticeable one before.

After a year of check-ups and assessments, he had surgery on both eyes when he was just short of 6 years old. It was successful and he doesn't squint anymore. I hated the idea of surgery, but it was fine. Patching was never suggested as an option for him. There were no problems with his vision.

I agree with the others, squints don't get better on their own.

madwomanintheattic Wed 19-Oct-11 22:24:45

dd2's eyes have always been equal btw, and as her squint alternated, we've never patched. she has always worn glasses for it though (didn't need them for her eyesight, just for the squint)

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