Pseudostrabismus is apparent squints. Pseudo means false, so pseudostrabismus means false squints. Here, the parents and other family members and friends feel that the child has a squint. When these children come to the clinic, even we as doctors feel that the child may have a squint. However, when we examine the child we find that the child does not have a squint.
This is nothing but an optical illusion and it's because of a wide nasal bridge or a wide and flat nose, something that children frequently have.
We are normally used to seeing an equal amount of white on either side of the black of the eye. If the child has a flat nose then the white part of the eye towards the nose gets covered by the skin. Thus, we get the impression that the child’s eyes are inwards.
We dont do any treatment for this squint and usually, the child outgrows this. As the nose develops the skin of the nose gets pulled and more white starts becoming visible and this appearance goes away.
See the picture. The first picture shows a child whose parents think that their child has a squint (apparent squint). This child’s parents get convinced and incidentally have been to us a few times over the years making sure that nothing needs to be done. The second picture is what we do in front of the parents to show them how the eyes dont really have a squint. If you notice in the second picture because the skin of the nose is being pulled there is more white visible toward the nose. Thus, the child’s eyes now appear like they are straight.