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What Is It?

What is Exophthalmos?

It is the projection or bulging of the eyeball outwards (proptosis), which may give the impression of “bulging eyes”. This may affect one eye or both, depending on the causes.

What causes it?

In a high percentage of cases, exophthalmos is associated with thyroid orbitopathy, an inflammatory disease related to hyperthyroidism.

The disease may be very serious, since the orbit is a non-extensible osseous cavity, in which an inflammatory process such as this can compress the optic nerve and cause blindness.

Other processes, which may cause exophthalmos, are orbital tumours, a large eyeball, high myopia or congenital glaucoma, as well as other thyroid or inflammatory orbital diseases.

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