Orbicularis fatigue: the 'peek' sign of myasthenia gravis

Arch Ophthalmol. 1979 Apr;97(4):677-9. doi: 10.1001/archopht.1979.01020010333009.


Three patients with myasthenia gravis demonstrated a distinctive sign of orbicularis fatigue. After momentary opposition on gentle sustained lid closure, the lid margins separated, resulting in widening of the palpebral fissure and scleral exposure. The patient thus appeared to "peek" at the examiner. The "peek" sign was not observed in 200 control patients and in 49 of 50 patients with facial weakness secondary to a spectrum of neuromuscular disorders. Three of 25 patients with myasthenia gravis displayed this sign, and in one patient it was the major diagnostic finding. The presence of the "peek" sign suggests the diagnosis of myasthenia gravis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Fatigue / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Myasthenia Gravis / complications
  • Myasthenia Gravis / diagnosis*
  • Oculomotor Muscles*