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Hypothyroid & Eye Lens Cloudiness -


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Venus had her annual appointment recently. We included thyroid testing because she has had some changes that could indicate hypothyroid. (Or premature aging or who knows what) I stated that she seemed to be looking older. (The dog not the vet.) Added that others were noticing it & also she seems more sedentary, astounding for a dog who already slept 16+ hours a day. During exam vet commented, "Her lens are getting cloudy." I asked if it was effecting her vision. Vet said, "Well, they are cloudy," then a hmmmm then a "Yes, I think we need to test thyroid." She proceeded to point out a few of the things I was going to mention. Venus' coat is thinning on the inside of her thighs, down her back legs & down her tail. Her skin is flaky though her coat still shines. She's gained 2 lbs & lost muscle, etc., etc. So the thyroid came back low, though not very low for a Greyhound. Still considering she appears symptomatic we started her on Soloxine. (Same vet looked at my other Grey's thyroid panel with lower T4 & proclaimed him normal since he wasn't symptomatic so I have some trust in her opinion on this.)

 

So anyway, I am scheduling an appt with a vet ophthalmologist but am wondering if the hypothyroid could be related to the clouding of the lenses. I do not notice this & no one else has commented. Only the vet sees it. This is not that bluish tint old dogs can get & it doesn't look cataract-ish to me. Vet did not speculate on cause. Felt it beared watching. Later I realized I had not asked the vet if she thought this was the beginning of cataracts but I think she would have stated that specifically if she thought so.

 

I know in humans hypothyroid is sometimes connected to cataracts. Is it the same with dogs? Any other connection?

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Haven't heard of cataracts being associated, but corneal dystrophy / cholesterol deposits certainly are. ckruzan may be able to tell you more when she gets a chance.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Guest smarthound

This sounds like a question for the OSU Greyhound Health and Wellness Program. You might want to contact them for a free consultation with your veterinarian.

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Molly (soon to be 8) has a cloudiness to her lens in certain lights. I pointed it out to my vet when I first got her, and she said it is sometimes something you see in older dogs. I said, she's only 6. Vet said hmmm (love those medical "hmmm"s :rolleyes:) Anyway, she didn't think it was cataracts, Molly's thyroid is normal, and her vision doesn't seem affected, so we are just keeping an eye on it. In a year and a half, there's been no change :dunno

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The lens cloudiness is lenticular sclerosis -- basically "older dog eyes," generally doesn't impinge on life to any noticeable degree.

 

The cholesterol thing associated with hypothyroid -- you see that on the cornea.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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I don't know if your Venus has the same thing, but Carl's only two symptoms of being hypothyroid were serious baldness (belly, chest, neck, back legs, etc) with a thin coat and he developed rings around his corneas. He was misdiagnosed several times, finally I found a real animal ophthalmologist who put all the pieces together. She diagnosed him with perilimbal lipid keratopathy. I'll post pictures of the rings below. He is on no eye medication, only Soloxine for his thyroid. She told me that this is fairly uncommon in a dog as young as him, it happens in older dogs. He is in no pain and it is far enough on the outside of his corneas that it does not effect his vision. She feels the prognosis is good and is confident that he will not lose his vision.

 

Typically, dogs with this condition will have high lipids and/or cholesterol readings, but that has never been the case with Carl, his blood levels have always been within normal limits. We believe that it developed as he was hypothyroid as a racer, had been treated for it, but when I got him the group I got him from either did not know or did not tell me that he was hypothyroid, so he was untreated for at least 1.5 years. I found out several months ago that he was diagnosed as hypothyroid while in his first year of racing, taken back to the farm for 6 months for treatment, then back to the track. Ironically, his thyroid tests (after I got him) had been normal the first 9 months that I had him, however that vet sent his blood work to Antech, not Jean Dodds.

 

He just had an appointment a week and a half ago with the ophthalmologist and she said that compared with where he was the last time she saw him (9 months ago) some of the lipid deposits are now gone in both eyes. She told me we didn't need to come back for 2 years, unless something has changed. I was apparently the worried well going into the appointment thinking that they'd gotten worse!

 

I went back into old pictures I had of his face and enlarged them so I could get a good look at his eyes over time. I sent these to OSU. As great as they are there, this isn't their strong suit, I think it was more interesting/educational for them as I don't think they offered any new information to my vet or the ophthalmologist.

 

Left eye early 2008:

November2008.jpg

 

Right eye July 2008:

CarlseyeinJuly20008.jpg

 

Left eye November 2008 (just before he started thyroid treatment):

April2009.jpg

 

Right eye January 2009 (after we'd begun treating him for being hypothyroid in November 2008):

IMG_0891-2.jpg

 

From Carl's file at the ophthalmologist's office last year:

IMG_1139.jpg

 

IMG_1140.jpg

 

IMG_1138.jpg

 

I hope they can figure out what is going on with Venus' eyes. Give her a hug!

Edited by ckruzan

Sunsands Doodles: Doodles aka Claire, Bella Run Softly: Softy aka Bowie (the Diamond Dog)

Missing my beautiful boy Sunsands Carl 2.25.2003 - 4.1.2014

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Just wanted to say thanks for the replies. I can see no evidence of lenticular (or is it nuclear?) sclerosis in Venus' eyes. My 13 yo does have that. It is normal for the oldies but goodies. That would not appear to be the case for Venus. The appt with the vet ophthalmologist is later this month so we will see then. It's my idea, not the vet's. Venus is with me a lot & in a huge variety of circumstances. It is important to know if her vision is still good. May be overkill, hopefully so, but I would rather be safe than sorry.

 

ckruzan - Thanks for all the info & the pics. That is very interesting. I for sure would not have looked at that & thought "thyroid". Must admit that I catch a glimpse of something on the edge of Venus right eye but it is hard to tell. Probably nothing but my imagination. Good wishes for Carl.

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