Blepharospasm The term Blepharospasm, from Blepharo (eyelid) and spasm (uncontrolled muscle contraction), can relate to any abnormal tic or twitch of the eyelid. However, it is normally distinguished from less serious disorders and refers to Benign Essential Blepharospasm, a focal dystonia (a neurological movement disorder involving involuntary and sustained muscle contractions) of the muscles around the eyes. more...
- Uncontrollable tics or twitches of the eye muscles and surrounding facial area
- Excessive blinking of the eyes, or forced closure of durations longer than the typlical blink reflex
- Dryness of the eyes
- Sensitivity to the sun and bright light
In most cases, blepharospasm seems to develop spontaneously. Its causes are generally unknown, but likely from abnormal functioning of the brain's basal ganglia. Concomitance with dry eye, as well as other dystonias such as Meige's syndrome been observed. Some drugs can induce blepharospasm, such as those used to treat Parkinson's disease.
- Drug therapy: Drug therapy for blepharospasm has proved generally unpredictable and short-lasted. Finding an effective regimen for any patient usually requires patience of patient and physician.
- Botulin toxin injections
- Surgery: Those patients that have not responded well to medication or botulinum toxin injection are candidates for surgical therapy. The most effective surgical treatment has been protractor myectomy, the removal of muscles responsible for eyelid closure.
- Dark glasses, for sunlight sensitivity as well as to cover one's eyes from other people.
- Stress management and support groups can help sufferers deal with the disease and prevent social isolation.
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