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Why do babies develop strabismus?

Horwood, A. (2018) Why do babies develop strabismus? In: 39th Meeting of the European Strabismological Association, 13th-15th September 2017, Porto, Portugal, pp. 33-37.

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Abstract/Summary

Purpose. To present evidence for the mechanism of the development of infantile esotropia. Methods. Our laboratory has used surveys, remote haploscopic photorefraction and clinical tests to study the development of ocular alignment, convergence, accommodation and their linkages in typical and atypical infants. An overview of our results is presented alongside other research evidence. Results. Neonatal misalignments are common, but mostly resolve before the time when cortical binocularity emerges. Early instability of ocular alignment and accommodation usually resolves by 8-9 weeks of age. Proximal cues appear more influential in early convergence and accommodation than the binocular disparity cues that become the major drive in older children and adults. Studies of premature and full term infants suggest the development of convergence and accommodation are “hard wired”. Conclusion. Infantile esotropia develops from neonatal biases to convergent eye movements that persist if normal binocular vision and stereopsis do not develop. The potential for suppression afforded by cortical binocularity, some aspects of which may be experience-dependent, on unstable eye alignment may provide an explanation why premature infants are more at risk for infantile esotropia.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Refereed:No
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Development
Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Perception and Action
ID Code:80023

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