Pet Glaucoma Screening
Glaucoma is a common condition in humans, but it can also occur in pets. Glaucoma is a condition of the eye in which the intraocular pressure (IOP) increases due to overproduction of fluid (aqueous humor) and a blocked drainage canal that cannot drain the fluid into the bloodstream. As a result, this fluid builds up within the eye and puts pressure on the optic nerve, causing pain and vision loss. At Sharon Veterinary Clinic, we want to preserve your companion’s eyesight as much as possible, which is why we offer glaucoma screening as a diagnostic service to our patients here in Sharon and surrounding communities.
How Glaucoma Screening Works
We can detect glaucoma by using an instrument called a tonometer pen, which measures the eye’s IOP. We gently apply “tonopen” to the surface of the eye (the cornea). Then, we record its resistance to pressure to determine if the IOP has increased above normal levels. We recommend pet glaucoma screening for any patients that we believe could be at risk. The earlier we can detect your pet’s glaucoma, the sooner we can treat it and preserve their vision.
Types of Glaucoma
There are two types of glaucoma that occur in pets; primary and secondary. Primary glaucoma is inherited, and can occur in breeds such as Chow Chows, Shih Tzus, Basset Hounds, American Cocker Spaniels, Siberian Huskies, and Jack Russell Terriers. Secondary glaucoma is brought about by other conditions of the eye such as cataracts, cancer, lens displacement, and retinal detachment. It is important to distinguish between these types, because their treatment methods differ.
Can Glaucoma Be Treated?
Unfortunately, we cannot restore lost vision. This is why an early diagnosis is necessary, and you need to let us know immediately if you notice your pet rubbing their eye, squinting, or acting lethargic. We can detect ulcers by temporarily staining the eye, run a test to measure tear production, and check eye pressure with our TonoVet Plus tonometer. The goal of treatment is to reduce the pressure within your pet’s eye, alleviate their pain, and save their vision.