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6th Nerve Palsy

I am a 27 year old female.  3 weeks ago I began having "jumping eyes" which got progressively worse into "crossed eyes/double vision".  Three days ago my eyes crossed and have been that way since.  I have already received my diagnosis (went to eye doctor today) of 6th nerve palsy.  He was concerned that I have no other symptoms and I am younger than most patients diagnosed with this.  Also he commented that the usual onset is only a couple days and it's full blown double vision...mine has taken three weeks to full double vision.
I will be having an MRI friday and a blood workup though I have never had diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol.  If the MRI shows nothing and the blood workup shows nothing that may have caused it I will be having an MRA (I guess looking at the arteries in my head not just structure?). The doctor was excellent today because from everything I am reading about this condition he diagnosed me correctly and is doing all the necessary testing.  
I am posting because I find my case interesting and was wondering if anyone had any opinion (not necessarily suggestions as if the doctor should test for something else).  I do have a patch but the strain is only relieved for about fifteen minutes so it's "patch on, patch off" (can't you hear mr. miagi from karate kid?!).  Are there any other suggestions for temporary relief?  I am getting a kink in my neck because I am turning my head to look to the right (it's my left eye affected so can't look straight or to the left AT ALL).  Aside from walking around with my eyes shut, anyone have anything?  Warm tea bags on my eyes?  Cool cucumber slices?  
I can't drive, can't do my job properly, and am beginning to have a constant headache from the strain.  And this may last 3 to 6 months?!?!?! GULP!
11 Responses
Avatar universal
I am 53 and I've had bi-lateral sixth nerve palsy since 2005.  I was diagnosed with heart disease in 2007.  I think they are related but no one knows for sure.  Hope yours goes away.
Avatar universal

I am 32 and this has just happened to me in the last two weeks.  I just woke up with double vision.  I have no other I have done a CT scan and an MRI and both were clear I all doing the blood workup tommorow.  Did you find out what caused it and has it gone away.
Avatar universal
I've just been Diagnosed w/ this.  Had CT-Scan: no tumors. Had MRI & Bloodtests and still waiting for results.
I was feeling under the weather since March, and feeling a bit dizzy/vertigo. (Was Dx'd with Vertigo 3 yrs ago.) After this Easter, when I'd go outside, I couldn't focus on things across the street. I wasn't sure what was happening until the next week when I started seeing double: long distances, straight ahead. And looking to my left.

The MRI will rule out MS and other things if it comes back negative. I wear a patch sometimes.  I rest a lot and try to avoid stress, for I get head pain and eye pain with this. Rest seems to help, but after a while, it worsens with the dizziness.

1072301 tn?1255461007
Last week I just felt faint and dizzy, then I started seeing double vision.  Since then I have gone to the emergency room (CT-Scan and MRI, blood work.  All these test showed up negative.  I then went to a Eye Doctor and she thought I had a mini stroke, then to a neurologist and he said I have a benign sixth cranial nerve palsy.  Told me to take an asprin a day and in one to three months my vision would return to my normal vision.  Beside the headaches and stress related with this I am not quite satisfied there is not help with medication or surgery.  I can't drive because I can't see the lines correctly.  Can anyone offer any advice?
Avatar universal
i having the same problem here and this is my third time.
first in november 2008, 2nd time in mac 2010 and now 5 /10/2010. even the doctor find it weird because it never happen for the third. i'm only 26 and it is hard for me because i'm taking care of my stroke father. the recovery is quiet slow for this recurrence. is there any advice for me let says like less taking certain food or less using computer?
i'm afraid it's going to be permanent or it will take a longer time to heal?
Avatar universal
I was diagnosed with 6th nerve palsy about 8 ys ago, a time I call "when my head blew up".  Many things went wrong all at once, including loss of balance and, a few weeks later, seizures.  Anyway, that was at its worst.  The 6th nerve palsy came and went wseveral times, so I hear ya, kcjk.  What did help with the first (and worst bout) was a round of steroids that I was given in the hospital (when I had the seizures during the time I was having 6th nerve palsy).  The double vision was getting better but as I tapered off the steroids, the eyes got worse, so the neuro had me increae the steroids back up and slowww down the taper.  Helped, even if they didn't understand why.

Despite multiple symptoms suggesting MS, I've never had results that substantiated that (Ie no lesions, no positive lumbar puncture), if that helps relieve anyone's anxiety.  I still have weird symptoms come and go that docs were never able to figure out a cause of.  Symptoms are managed individually (neuro for seizures and head stuff; endo for blood pressure and stress-related organ problems).  

But oddly enough, just discovered that my symptoms line up perfectly with dysautonomia.  Something to look into.  hth
Avatar universal
I know this was posted a few years ago, but if this isn't cleared up for you by now or if anyone else could benefit from this info, have you tried prism lenses?  I was diagnosed last week and my neuro-opthamologist put a prism sticker type thing on one side of my glasses (the left side but apparently my right side is the problem) and although everyone in my family that looks through them says it looks like a blurry 3D image, it looks like it did before the double vision to me.  My doctor is also ordering me actual prism lenses to get rid of the sticker (it's not bad but it has a bubble under it from not being pressed down just right and it's a bit bothersome). It is amazing to not have to look like a pirate now =)  I felt so stupid having to close one of my eyes to do ANYTHING and in public you get a lot of funny looks, haha.  I hope this can help someone and if I hear of anything more helpful, I'll repost =)
Avatar universal
Wow....I am a male...30 yrs old......and I have exacrly the same symptoms you have I don't know what to do. the symptoms are in my left eye. I've been using the patch for several months the doctors don't know what it is I had bloodwork done and I've had an MRI well, but they already revealed nothing. I've had double vision for around 4 months now. it all started in 2010 but my symptoms went away but now they have to come back full force.... I can barely see out of my left eye I cannot turn my left eye out word...... I can't drive a car I can't see straight ahead either.... I was so worried that it was a tumor or something..... I don't know what to do if you find out anything please let me know can just post something it's so scary
All the sypmtops are same with the problems that I have had almost 1 year. I see noone could find the exact solution of this problem actually. I think, it is time for my hopes to be destroyed. I just wish I could not be worse. I will never be able to drive, walk straight and talk to somebody without turning my head. I can not find an answer what I did wrong and why this disease found me. :(
Avatar universal
All the sypmtops are same with the problems that I have had almost 1 year. I see noone could find the exact solution of this problem actually. I think, it is time for my hopes to be destroyed. I just wish I could not be worse. I will never be able to drive, walk straight and talk to somebody without turning my head. I can not find an answer what I did wrong and why this disease found me. :(
Avatar universal
I am 24 years old and am currently experiencing this. I woke up 4 days ago with double vision :( I'm wearing an eye patch and alternating between my eyes every hour or 2 . This freaking *****.
Avatar universal
Has the original poster had a recovery or diagnosis as to how it happened yet?
2 years ago (28 year old female) I was driving when my vision went weird. It was like images were overlapping each other  and I couldn't focus on things in the distance properly. The next day it was full on double vision. I have had countless blood tests, MRI's and a lumbar puncture and everything came back fine. I was wearing the stick on prism then got them fitted into a pair of glasses which helped a lot. In the last week my vision even with these glasses on went very double again. I went back to the hospital and they said I've gone from a 4 diaptor to a 20 which is a huge jump. They're running bloods again and booking in another MRI but I'm not hopeful they'll find anything. Apparently if it stays at this level for a significant period then the muscle/eye can be operated on. I just want to be able to see normally again without a patch/prism!!
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