DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Eyes in thyrotoxicosis. Patient affected by exophthalmos (bulging eyeballs) in both eyes. It was triggered by an overproduction of hormones in the thyroid gland, a condition also known as thyrotoxicosis. Other causes of exophthalmos include eye tumours, inflammation and aneurysm (ballooning of an artery) behind the eye. Exophthalmos restricts eye movement and causes double vision. In severe cases the pressure in the orbit is so high that the blood supply to the optic nerve is stopped, resulting in blindness. Treatment of the disorder is with hormone drugs. Occasionally, surgery to relieve pressure on the eyeball may be required.
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