Are Patients Awake During Eye Muscle Repair Surgery?

When discussing eye muscle repair surgery, a critical question that often arises is whether the patient remains awake during the procedure.

Eye muscle repair surgery, also known as strabismus surgery, is a procedure performed to correct misaligned eyes. The surgery involves the alteration of the eye muscles’ length or position to assist in proper alignment.

Anesthesia Applied in Eye Muscle Repair Surgery

Like other surgical operations, anesthesia is essential for eye muscle repair surgery. It is used to control pain and ensure the patient’s comfort throughout the procedure. The choice of anesthesia depends mainly on factors such as the patient’s age, health condition, and personal preference, as well as the surgeon’s recommendations. 

1. General Anesthesia

General anesthesia is the most commonly utilized form of anesthesia for eye muscle repair surgery. It involves putting the patient into a complete state of unconsciousness throughout the procedure. This particular choice is often favored for children and those who may feel uneasy or in pain if they were awake during the operation. 

2. Local Anesthesia

Adult patients may be administered with local anesthesia in certain situations. This type of anesthesia only numbs a particular region, such as the area around the eyes. Consequently, the patient is technically conscious during the surgical procedure but experiences no pain. 

Anesthesia TypeConscious?Pain
General AnesthesiaNoNo
Local AnesthesiaYesNo

The Patient’s Experience

Under general anesthesia, patients have no awareness or memory of the surgery as they are in a deep sleep-like state. Conversely, patients under local anesthesia may be aware of lights or movement but should not experience discomfort or pain during the operation.


Patients undergoing eye muscle repair surgery could either be awake or unconscious during the procedure depending on the type of anesthesia used. Patients should have a open conversation with their surgeons to decide on the best choice suited to their individual needs and comfort levels.  

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