Often a symptom of overactivity of the thyroid, the bulging eyes condition is also referred to as proptosis or exophthalmos.

When the thyroid gland becomes too active, it can cause Graves disease which leads to bulging or protruding of one or both of the eyes. This is not to be confused with prominent eyes or eye swelling, which can be due to other health factors. Graves disease can be confirmed by a blood test to check the thyroid gland function.

Both eyes are usually affected by Graves disease and there may be some pain or aching in the eye area, however, if one or both eyes are bulging it is important to see a professional for a thorough eye examination to determine the exact cause.

Infections are the most common causes of bulging eyes in babies. These can lead to swelling in the eye area, pushing the eyeball forward, resulting in a bulging effect. Bulging eyes may also be the result of eye surgery, injury or inflammation of the eye socket.

As can be seen in pictures of bulging eyes, the condition commonly causes other symptoms such as dry eyes and irritation. It may also impede blinking, giving the patient the look of staring. They might also suffer vision disturbances such as difficulty focusing or double vision.

Your medical professional will be able to assess the causes of the condition using specialised equipment, including OCT Technology.

Call Insight Optometrists or your doctor as soon as possible if you require more information about bulging eyes.

References – Bulging Eyes:

  1. Christopher J. Brady, MD, Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology, Wilmer Eye Institute, Retina Division, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine