Strabismus surgery in Angelman syndrome: More than ocular alignment

Paola Michieletto, Stefano Pensiero, Laura Diplotti, Luca Ronfani, Manuela Giangreco, Alberto Danieli, Paolo Bonanni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose To report and evaluate strabismus surgery in children with Angelman syndrome, in order to optimize and standardize surgical approach. Other purposes are to understand the possible relation between ocular findings and motor ability, and between improvement in ocular alignment and changes in motor skills in this population. Design Observational cross-sectional study. Methods Medical records of pediatric patients with Angelman syndrome, who underwent strabismus surgery, were investigated. Collected data included: genotype, gender, age at the time of surgery, refractive error, pre-operative strabismus, surgical procedure, surgical outcome, gross and fine motor development assessment pre- and post-operatively. Results Seventeen subjects, aged 3–15 years, were investigated. Fourteen patients were exotropic, three esotropic. Most patients presented astigmatism. Considering the exaggerated response to standard amounts of surgery and the risk of consecutive strabismus on long term follow-up reported by previous studies in children with developmental delay, a reduction of the amount of strabismus surgery was applied. Post-operatively, all patients presented with a significative reduction of the baseline deviation angle, with all esotropic patients and 7 exotropic patients (59%) achieving orthotropia. The surgical outcomes were variable according to the type and the amount of baseline strabismus, but no case presented with exaggerated surgical response. At baseline, patients showed important delays in all motor abilities, and, post-operatively, presented a significant improvement in walking and fine motor tasks. Pre- and post-operative motor abilities were negatively correlated to astigmatism, anisometropia, and amount of deviation. Conclusions According to our data, the standard nomograms for strabismus surgery may be successfully applied in subjects with Angelman syndrome and exotropia. Our data suggest that the reduction of the deviation angle improves motor skills in strabismic pediatric patients with Angelman syndrome.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number11 November
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


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