Q: What is the treatment of eye disease caused by Graves' disease?
A: Graves' disease is a form of overactive thyroid which can affect eye muscles, leading to uncoordinated eye movements. It also can cause protrusion of the eyeballs, which gives the patient the appearance of staring. Occasionally, we use steroids treatment on a temporary basis if the patient has double vision. Another option, less common, for treatment is radiation treatment to the orbits. More extreme cases are occasionally treated with orbital surgery; however, most cases of eye involvement will eventually achieve spontaneous remission. One factor that increases the risk of eye involvement in Graves' disease is smoking.
- Dr. Ana Cornea, endocrinologist, Diagnostic Center; member, Chattanooga-Hamilton County Medical Society
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