Eye muscle repair - discharge

You or your child had eye muscle repair surgery to correct eye muscle problems that cause crossed eyes. The medical term for crossed eyes is strabismus.

Children usually receive general anesthesia for this surgery. They were asleep and did not feel pain. Most adults are usually awake and sleepy, but pain-free. They had numbing medicine injected around their eye to block pain.

A small incision (cut) was made in the tissue between the eye and eyelid. This tissue is called the conjunctiva. One or more of the muscles of the eye was strengthened or weakened to position the eye properly and help it move correctly. After a few hours of recovery, you or your child went home.


After surgery:

  • The eye will be red and slightly swollen for a couple of days. It should open fully within 2 days after surgery.
  • The eye may be "scratchy" and sore when it moves. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or a cool, damp washcloth placed gently over the eye can provide comfort.
  • You or your child may have some blood-tinged discharge from the eye. The doctor will prescribe eye ointment or eye drops to use after the surgery to help the eye heal and to prevent infection.
  • Your eyes or your child’s eye may be sensitive to light. Try dimming the lights, closing curtains or shades, or wearing sunglasses.

It is helpful if your child can avoid rubbing their eyes.

Double vision is common after surgery for adults and for children age 6 and older It is less common in younger children. Double vision usually goes away sometime after the surgery.

You or your child can resume normal activities and exercise within a few days after surgery. You can go back to work, and your child may go back to school or daycare a day or 2 after surgery. If your child had the surgery, slowly start up their regular diet. Many children feel a little sick to their stomach after surgery.

Most people do not have to wear a patch over their eye after this surgery, but some do.

You or your child should have a follow-up appointment with the eye surgeon 1 to 2 weeks after the surgery.

When to Call the Doctor

Call the doctor if you or your child has:

  • A lasting low-grade fever, or fever higher than 101 °F
  • Increased swelling, pain, drainage, or bleeding from the eye
  • Also call the doctor if the eye is no longer straight or is "way out of line."

Alternate Names

Repair of cross-eye - discharge; Resection and recession - discharge; Lazy eye repair - discharge; Strabismus repair - discharge; Extraocular muscle surgery - discharge


Lingua RW, Diamond LG. Techniques of strabismus surgery. In: Yanoff M, Duker JS, Augsburger JJ, et al, eds. Ophthalmology. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2004:chap 81.

Olitsky SE, Hug D, Smith LP. Disorders of Eye Movement and Alignment. In: Kliegman RM, Behrman RE, Jenson HB, Stanton BF, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 18th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 622.

Update Date: 8/12/2012

Updated by: Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine; and Franklin W. Lusby, MD, Ophthalmologist, Lusby Vision Institute, La Jolla, California. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.


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