What is Nystagmus?

Nystagmus is a condition of uncontrollable eye movements, that maybe side to side, up and down or in a circle. Due to unintentional eye movements, it is generally referred as ‘dancing eyes’. It usually arises in infancy, but can also be developed later in life. Once assumed incurable, now various drugs and treatments are available for nystagmus. Early diagnosis and treatment would prevent the risk of limited or reduced vision.


The symptoms that can occur with nystagmus include:

  • Difficulty seeing in darkness
  • Dizziness
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Oscillopsia
  • Vision problems


Nystagmus can be a result of several conditions including:

  • Head injuries
  • Thiamine or Vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Stroke
  • Inner ear problems
  • Other eye problems


There are many factors that might increase your chance of acquiring nystagmus:

  • Albinism
  • Alcohol or drug use
  • Infection of the inner ear
  • Family member with nystagmus


  • Reduce eyestrain
  • Prevent injuries
  • Wear sunglasses
  • Get regular eye exams
  • Quit smoking

How is it diagnosed?

If you have problems with your eye movement, then your doctor may order you to perform some tests to study the extremity of your condition.


How is it treated?

Many treatment options are there to minimize this condition of nystagmus and hence to improve vision.


  • Tenotomy

    The main focus is to assist with the head tilt that generally comes with nystagmus.

  • Medications

    Some drugs like anti-seizure medicine gabapentin, Botox and the muscle relaxant baclofen may help you to ease your symptoms.

  • LASIK or Vision ICL

    For extreme nearsighted people, Vision ICL or LASIK can help improve their eyesight.

When do I contact the doctor?

If someone is having problems with his eye movements, then the person should urgently visit the doctor as nystagmus may cause limited or reduced vision.

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How does Medanta provide care?

From Cataract to Contoura Vision LASIK surgeries, the Ophthalmology division at Medanta, is designed to provide a comprehensive range of medical and surgical eyecare, which is dedicated to the protection, preservation, enhancement, and restoration..

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