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I have a small eye – Why is that?

Lots of people have eyes that vary in size slightly but require no medical attention. However, if one eye appears significantly smaller than the other, it could be an indication of a variety of eye conditions.

woman with a small eye

Let’s take a look at some of the possible reasons for having a small eye.


The appearance of a small eye could be a sign of enophthalmos. This is a condition where the eye begins to sink into the socket. The cause of this condition includes development problems in utero, inflammation conditions and trauma.


A small eye could also be a sign of congenital defect which results in an abnormally small eye or eyes. The cause of this condition is unknown. This condition typically results in reduced vision or blindness, but normal vision is still able if the eyes are almost normal in size.


This condition causes a drooping eyelid and is caused by a problem with the eye muscle which lifts the eyelid known as the levator muscle. In adults, this condition is commonly a result of the ageing of the levator’s connective tissue. Sometimes routine surgeries such as cataract surgery or LASIK surgery are to blame for the development of ptosis, as a result of the tendon or muscle being stretched. In extreme cases it could be an indication of Myasthenia Gravis.

Bulging eye

A small eye could also be related to a bulging eye. This is common in adults with Graves disease, which causes swelling of tissue around and behind an eye, pushing the eyeball forward. This could result in your other eye appearing smaller. Other symptoms to look out for include a decrease in your ability to see, double vision, eye redness or pain, a headache, pulsation of the bulging eye or fever. Treatment for this condition is dependent on the specific cause; however, artificial tears can help in some cases. Antibiotics are also used as a form of treatment in some cases.

When to see your local independent optician

If your symptoms persist and are causing you concern, it’s best to make an appointment with an optometrist. This is also the case if you are suffering from additional symptoms alongside that of having a small eye. The proper diagnosis will allow you to receive effective treatment.

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