Your thyroid is a small gland that plays a big role in your health. As part of your endocrine system, it produces and releases hormones that help control a range of important functions, from your body temperature to the rate at which your body converts food into energy.When your thyroid gland isn’t functioning properly, you can develop a broad range of health problems — including issues that negatively affect your eyes. Thyroid eye disease (TED), also known as Graves' ophthalmopathy, is one such complication.
If you’ve developed TED, you may want to consider TEPEZZA®. infusions.
At our offices in Scarsdale and the Upper East Side of Manhattan, New York, board-certified oculofacial plastic surgeon Robert M. Schwarcz, MD, offers TEPEZZA to improve your eye health and appearance and correct or prevent thyroid-related vision problems.
Thyroid eye disease basics
When you have thyroid eye disease, muscles in your eyes, eyelids, tear glands, and fatty tissue behind your eyes become inflamed. As a result, your eyes may appear red and swollen, creating a bulging look. These symptoms can be quite uncomfortable physically and fuel self-consciousness about your appearance.
Other eye-related issues that may stem from TED include:
- Blurred or double vision
- Difficulty moving your eyes
- Eyes that no longer move in line with each other
- Bags or swelling under your eyes
- Light sensitivity
- Inability to fully close your eyes, due to nerve pressure or ulcers
- Potentially severe eye pain
- Watery eyes
- Vision loss
TED symptoms usually unfold as part of the autoimmune disorder called Graves’ disease. Your immune system perceives healthy tissues around your eyes as harmful and attacks them, bringing on inflammation.
How TEPEZZA helps
TED is a progressive eye disease, meaning your symptoms worsen over time without treatment. That’s where TEPEZZA comes in. A prescription medication given as an IV infusion, TEPEZZA has been shown to reduce thyroid eye disease symptoms by over 80% within 24 weeks.
During each treatment — you undergo an eight-infusion series — you relax comfortably in a chair while Dr. Schwarcz injects the medication into one of your veins through a needle. While your first two infusions may take around 90 minutes, the remaining six take closer to 60 minutes.
TEPEZZA infusions aren’t painful and you should be able to get back to your daily activities immediately after your treatment. This remarkable approach treats the cause of TED, not just the symptoms.
Results vary, but we find that many people experience less eye-bulging and improved vision in as few as two treatments. From there, your condition continues to improve over the course of your treatment.
To learn more about TEPEZZA for thyroid eye disease and to find out if you’re a candidate for this treatment, call one of our offices to book an appointment with Dr. Schwarcz today. You can also request an appointment online.