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R.A. Harrad, S. Jackson, N. Rumsey; Are You Looking at Me Mate? The Psychosocial Impact of Strabismus Surgery in Adults . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2003;44(13):1923.
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Purpose:Over the past 30 years, only 6 studies have examined the psychological impact of strabismus in adults. There is no data on a large population which compares pre and post operative data using validated questionnaires, and relates surgical results to psychosocial outcomes. Our study aims to provide this data. Methods: The subjects were seen at the Bristol Eye Hospital: first, at their usual 6-week pre-operative assessment, and secondly at the 3 month outpatients appointment following their surgery. At both appointments patients completed a series of questionnaires: a demographic questionnaire, Medical Background form, Strabismus Form, the Derriford Appearance Scale (DAS-24), the WHOQOL (short form), and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Finally the patients had an interview with the researcher aimed at determining current coping strategies in relation to living with a strabismus, the reasons for seeking surgery, and the impact of the condition. Results: Currently 20 patients have completed the study. Early data analysis indicates that there is no correlation between the degree of eye misalignment perceived by the patient and the measured eye deviation and the psychological measures employed in this study either before or after surgery. Results from 2-tailed Wilcoxon texts indicate that for all patients the surgery significantly improves how severe they perceive their squint to be (W=28, n=20, p<0.02). Surgery also significantly improves how they view their appearance - DAS measure - W=17.5, n=19, p<0.02). For non-diplopic patients there is a significant reduction in levels of anxiety - HADS measure - (W=13.5, n=13, p<0.05). Conclusion: Strabismic adults are happier with their appearance following corrective surgery. The extent of this improvement is unrelated to the change in angle of strabismus as measured on prism cover test.
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