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Cranial mononeuropathy III - diabetic type

Contents of this page:


Central nervous system
Central nervous system

Alternative Names    Return to top

Diabetic third nerve palsy; Pupil-sparing third cranial nerve palsy

Definition    Return to top

Cranial mononeuropathy III is a complication of diabetes that involves double vision and eyelid drooping.

Causes    Return to top

Cranial mononeuropathy III - diabetic type is a mononeuropathy, which means that only one nerve is damaged. It involves the third cranial (oculomotor) nerve, which is one of the cranial nerves that controls eye movement. This type of damage usually occurs with diabetic neuropathy.

Cranial mononeuropathy III is the most common cranial nerve disorder in people with diabetes.

Symptoms    Return to top

Exams and Tests    Return to top

An examination of the eyes will determine whether only the third nerve is affected or if other nerves have also been damaged. Signs may include:

In some cases, it may not be clear if the nerve damage is due to diabetes or some other cause, such as an aneurysm. Tests to rule out other causes may include:

Treatment    Return to top

There is no specific treatment to correct the nerve injury.

Treatments may include:

Some people may recover without treatment.

Outlook (Prognosis)    Return to top

Many patients get better over time, although some have permanent eye muscle weakness.

Possible Complications    Return to top

When to Contact a Medical Professional    Return to top

Call your health care provider if you have double vision and it doesn't go away in a few minutes, especially if you also have eyelid drooping.

Prevention    Return to top

Control of blood sugar levels in people with diabetes may reduce the risk of developing this disorder.

Update Date: 2/13/2008

Updated by: Luc Jasmin, MD, PhD, Departments of Anatomy & Neurological Surgery, University of California, San Francisco, CA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

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