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Eyes Disorders

Human beings receive about 70% of all sensory information through the eyes. That is why health care professionals need to urge patients to seek routine ophthalmologic examinations. It's important for patients to receive early treatment for vision problems to correct impaired vision and avoid blindness.

The ocular system consists of the bony orbit that houses the eye; the contents of the orbit, including the eyeball, optic nerve, extraocular muscles, cranial nerves (III, IV, and VI), blood vessels, orbital fat, and lacrimal system; and the eyelid that protects and covers the eye.

The orbit (or socket) encloses the eyeball in a protective recess in the skull. The seven bones of the orbit - the frontal, sphenoid, zygomatic, maxilla, palatine, ethmoid, and lacrimal bones - form a cone, with the apex pointing toward the brain; the base of the cone forms the orbital rim. The periorbita covers the orbital bones. The thinness of the orbital wall makes this area especially vulnerable to fractures.

Various extraocular muscles hold the eyeball in place and control its movement. These muscles include the following:

  • superior rectus, which rotates the eye upward as well as adducts and rotates it inward
  • inferior rectus, which rotates the eye downward as well as adducts and rotates it outward
  • lateral rectus, which turns the eye outward (laterally)
  • medial rectus, which turns the eye inward (medially)
  • superior oblique, which turns the eye downward and abducts and rotates it inward
  • inferior oblique, which turns the eye upward and abducts and turns it outward.

The actions of these muscles are mutually antagonistic. As one contracts, its opposing muscle relaxes.

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