Non-surgical treatment may include taking steroid medications by mouth to control swelling and inflammation of the eye muscles, wearing sunglasses frequently to relieve light sensitivity associated with thyroid eye disease, and applying lubricating ointment to relieve dry eye.

Surgical treatment for thyroid eye disease may include the following:

  • Surgery of certain eye muscles to help treat double vision;
  • Eyelid surgery to treat eyelid retraction and help protect the eye;
  • A procedure called orbital decompression for certain advanced cases of thyroid eye disease. This procedure, aimed at treating eye protrusion, consists of creating targeted breaks in some of the orbital bones to allow the swelling to expand to other areas and not push the eyes outward.

Image reproduced, with permission, from Raab EL, Basic and Clinical Science Course, Section 6, American Academy of Ophthalmology, 2011-2012.

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