Eye disorders are commonly diagnosed at Pittwater Animal Hospital. If there is any sudden change in your pet’s eye it is best to book an immediate consultation. Trauma such as cat scratches or foreign material getting in the eye can rapidly progress to more dangerous uveitis.
Pittwater is fully equipped to diagnose and manage corneal ulcers, uveitis, glaucoma and “dry eye syndrome” but we may also refer you to an eye specialist if we detect something more concerning.
There are several important testing procedures that can be performed at Pittwater Animal Hospital.
Fluorescein dye test
Involves instilling a dye in the eye to look for any damage to the outer layer of the cornea. Eyes are like a shiny marble. Dye placed on a perfect marble will run straight off where as if there is a scratch in the surface of the marble the dye will absorb. The dye test can reveal then monitor a scratch on the cornea or an area of damaged cornea called a corneal ulcer. Sometimes a UV light is useful to make the dye more obvious when examining the eye. Fluorescein shines quite green under the UV light.
Schirmers Tear Test
This test measures the production of tears in the eye over one minute. Animals with an unhealthy tear production will get increased mucus in their eyes and are prone to damage to the cornea or outer layer of the eye. Some medications can increase the tear production of the eye if the problem is picked up early enough.
Intraocular Pressure Measurement
A tonometer is used to measure the pressure of the eyeball. Just like a car tyre the eyeball can have too little pressure or too much. Glaucoma is the term for too much pressure in the eye. This causes damage to the functional part of the eye as well as considerable pain. Glaucoma can sometimes be managed medically but is a difficult condition.
Animals with eye inflammation called uveitis will have a lower than usual eyeball pressure. The tonometer is an excellent diagnostic and monitoring tool for uveitis.
The ability to look at the external eye, eyelids and conjunctiva with magnifiers means we can pick up small things that may be affecting the eye. Foreign matter caught in the cornea, conjunctiva or under the third eyelid, eye lashes pressing on the eye or small tumours along the eyelids can all be discovered on closer examination.
This is a tool used to look through the cornea to examine the back of the eye. Changes in setting of the scope will focus at different depths inside the eye. The ophthalmoscope allows your veterinarian to detect abnormalities of the back of the eye (the retina), the lens and the iris .
Timely treatment and careful management of eye conditions can get your pet back to excellent eye sight.
If you are concerned your pet has an eye problem, book an appointment with one of our very experienced veterinarians to have it assessed.