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Covid 19 Ophthalmology for Animals - August 6, 2020

Veterinary care is an essential part of our community and we want to assure you that our hospital is open and will continue to provide services at this time. We also want to work with you and our staff to limit direct contact in order to focus on safety for everyone during this pandemic. Accordingly, we ask that you follow the below steps for the safety of all:

  • Upon arrival at the hospital, please remain in your vehicle and call us.
  • After receipt of the call, we will check you in as soon as possible from outside the hospital.
  • If you are at the hospital to pick up medication, please remain in your car outside the hospital and call the front desk. We will deliver your order to your car as quickly as possible.
  • If you are not feeling well or may be at risk of exposure to coronavirus, please ask a healthy friend or family member to transport your pet to the hospital on your behalf.
  • We will do our best to coordinate your visit from outside the hospital, including providing follow up instructions and taking payments.

Ophthalmology for Animals, Inc., we have various ways to help care for your pets without a trip or call to the hospital.

  1. Home Delivery: medications, including prescriptions and refills, can be ordered by sending us an email or text
  2. Email: your questions, concerns, prescription refills, and pictures. We will do our best to respond in a timely manner.

Our goal is to keep our essential services available to the communities we serve and be there for you and your pets. Thank you for your cooperation and for doing your part in helping to keep pets and people safe, and please don’t hesitate to call with questions.

We anticipate our phone lines will be busier than usual, and therefore, we appreciate your patience!

Pigmentary Keratopathy

pdfPDF version available for download here

Pigmentary keratopathy/keratitis in the dog is due to pigment migration onto the cornea and is a frequent cause of blindness in the Pug, Shih Tzu and Pekingese.

The cause of pigmentary keratopathy is multifactorial. Corneal irritation from abnormally placed lashes, medial entropion (eyelids rolling in), and nasal fold trichiasis are common. Decreased production of tears (“dry eye”) and/or premature evaporation of tears is almost always present. Pigmentary keratopathy occurs in dogs with shallow orbits and incomplete blinking, especially the Pug. Chronic irritation may permanently alter corneal immunity as well because the pigment migration often progresses to areas of non-irritated corena if the problem is not addressed.

The pigmentation frequently progresses to cover the central corneal and pupil and eventually interferes with light entering the eye. Many owners are not aware of the problem until the animal becomes visually impaired.

Treatment is directed at halting the progression of pigmentation and correcting the inciting cause. Medial pocket flap canthoplasty (surgical reconstruction of the medial canthus) is frequently employed in young dogs with severe disease. Surgery usually slows the pigment but rearely halts it. Surgery is usually performed in dogs that have a good chance of going blind in their lifetime. Correction of distichiae, dry eye, nasal folds or skin disease (especially allergies or demodectic mange) is important. Removing the pigment directly via keratectomy, cryotherapy or laser excision is unfortunately ineffective and makes the disease worse.

Chronic topical medical therapy using corticosteroid ointment and/or a tear stimulator (cyclosporine or tacrolimus) are most effective in promoting regression of medial granulation and pigmentation. Combination therapy is usually started at twice daily. Significant results may not be seen for four to six months. Lubricant ointments such as lacrilube should be used prior to bedtime. In many scenarios, prevention of progression is considered successful therapy. Topical steroids can make ulcerations in the cornea worse if they occur. We advise clients to stop steroids and call us, your primary veterinarian or the emergency clinic immediately if squinting, pain or discharge is noted.

We Are Ready To Help

Request an appointment with one of our veterinarian specialists to see how we can help you and your beloved pet.

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