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Thyroid Eye Disease

Thyroid eye disease, also known as Graves’ ophthalmopathy or simply shortened to TED, describes a group of inflammatory changes to the eyelids and eye socket related to thyroid dysfunction.

Thyroid eye disease is most commonly associated with Graves’ disease or an overactive thyroid, but can also be caused by other thyroid disorders. It is crucial for patients with TED to be seen by an oculofacial plastics specialists, as this disease can be difficult to diagnose and can cause considerable risk to your vision.

Thyroid eye disease, also known as Graves’ ophthalmopathy or simply shortened to TED, describes a group of inflammatory changes to the eyelids and eye socket related to thyroid dysfunction.

Thyroid eye disease is most commonly associated with Graves’ disease or an overactive thyroid, but can also be caused by other thyroid disorders. It is crucial for patients with TED to be seen by an oculofacial plastics specialists, as this disease can be difficult to diagnose and can cause considerable risk to your vision.

Thyroid Eye Disease Symptoms

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Thyroid Eye Disease?

The visible changes associated with thyroid eye disease include bulging or protrusion of one or both eyes, and this is why an oculofacial specialist can be of particular help. Commonly, there is a change in the height of the upper eyelid and it may appear raised or retracted. The fat that surrounds the eye can become more prominent and create more swelling or bags around the upper and lower eyelids. Eyes can become red, irritated, dry, and painful.

Additionally, the muscles of eye movement can become thick and inflexible, leading to double vision. In severe cases of TED, the eye socket can become so swollen that it can apply dangerous pressure to the optic nerve leading to permanent vision loss.

How Is Thyroid Eye Disease Treated?

The most important factor in treating and controlling the changes of the eyes from thyroid disorders is good control of the underlying condition. This involves close care with an endocrinology specialist to monitor and control the thyroid function. The doctors at Eyesthetica communicate closely with other doctors to ensure complete care.

Treatment can include treatment with topical, oral or IV medicines to radiation treatment or surgery. The approach to therapy is tailored to the individual needs of the patient and is dependent on the manifestations of their thyroid disease. The doctors at Eyesthetica have all been trained in the most current and cutting-edge therapies for severe thyroid eye disease.

What Are Some of the Surgical Options for Thyroid Eye Disease?

In addition to various new and exciting medical treatments for thyroid eye disease, there are surgical treatments that can mitigate the symptoms of this appearance-altering disease. The surgeons at Eyesthetica correct the upper eyelid retraction with surgical approaches either through the inside of the eyelid or through the upper eyelid skin. Lower eyelid retraction can be repaired with lower eyelid surgery to reposition or strengthen the lid by borrowing tissue from the hard palate for other sites.

Thyroid Eye Disease Surgical Options
Orbital Decompression Surgery

Orbital Decompression Surgery

Orbital decompression surgery is another strategy utilized in severe cases of thyroid eye disease where the eye is protruding forward. Fatty decompression, or removal and sculpting of the prominent fat of the upper and lower eyelids, can be performed through a hidden incision on the inside of the lower eyelid. This can be augmented with upper eyelid surgery and judicious removal of fat.

Bony Decompression Surgery

The doctors at Eyesthetica also perform bony decompression surgery, in which the bones of the orbit are reshaped to restore the previous appearance and protect the vision. Decompression surgery enlarges the orbital space by removing the bone adjacent to the sinuses. This can be performed through the inside of the lower eyelid or through a transantral approach through a small incision in the mouth. Fatty decompression may be performed at the same time.

Bony Decompression Surgery

Thyroid eye disease management can be complex, but can help restore your appearance. Schedule an appointment with one of our skilled doctors for an evaluation and to learn more.

Be sure to visit our

What to Expect

section to learn more about planning for your surgery!

Testimonials

“I had skin cancer on my eyelid and Eyesthetica performed the surgery to remove it. They did an excellent job! The office staff also worked with me and my insurance to get the lowest cost treatment. Thank you!”
“My mother found this office for my father, who needed surgery on his eyelids. Finding this office and Dr. Burnstine was the best thing we could have done! My father’s care and treatment has been exceptional! We could never have hoped for a better team to take care of him! Thank you to everyone at Eyesthetica of Pasadena for all you’ve done for my dad!!”