Hyperthyroidism, also known as an overactive thyroid gland, involves an excessive amount of hormone production that can lead to the following:

  • Weight loss
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Irritability

One of the most common reasons for an overactive thyroid gland is Graves’ disease, an autoimmune disorder in which antibodies cause the thyroid to produce too much thyroxine.

Symptoms of Thyroid Eye Disease

This condition may cause symptoms within the eyes such as:

  • Bulging eyes
  • Excessive tearing
  • Swollen eyelids
  • Light sensitivity
  • Dry eyes
  • Double vision
  • Red eyes
  • Difficulty closing the eyelids
  • Corneal ulcer
  • Compression of the optic nerve

Treatment of Thyroid Eye Disease

If symptoms are mild, conservative treatment may be attempted using:

  • Lubricating eye drops
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Protective eye coverings
  • Prism lenses for double vision

In more severe cases of thyroid eye disease, surgical treatment may be recommended. Depending upon how the condition is affecting the eyes, procedures may be considered to:

  • Relieve the pressure on the optic nerve
  • Reposition the muscles of the eye
  • Alter the eyelid skin and tissue