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Cranial mononeuropathy VI

  • Definition

    Cranial mononeuropathy VI is a nerve disorder. It prevents some of the muscles that control eye movements from working well. As a result, people may see two of the same image (double vision).

    Alternative Names

    Abducens palsy; Lateral rectus palsy; Vith nerve palsy; Cranial nerve VI palsy

    Causes, incidence, and risk factors

    Cranial mononeuropathy VI is damage to the sixth cranial (skull) nerve. This nerve, also called the abducens nerve, helps control eye movement to the left or right.

    Disorders of this nerve can occur with:

    • Brain aneurysms
    • Diabetic neuropathy
    • Increased pressure in the skull (intracranial pressure)
    • Infections (such as meningitis or sinusitis)
    • Pregnancy
    • Tissue damage from loss of blood flow (infarction)
    • Trauma (caused by head injury or accidentally during surgery)
    • Tumors

    In some people, there is no obvious cause.

    Because there are common nerve pathways through the skull, the same disorder that damages the sixth cranial nerve may affect other cranial nerves (such as the third or fourth cranial nerve).