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Detached Retina

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Our vet noticed a cataract forming in Stella's right eye about eight weeks ago (she seems much too young for this; she's not even three yet). We went in for a recheck yesterday morning to see if there was any change. And yes, it has progressed somewhat, but I got an awful surprise. In that same eye, it appears that the retina has partially detached and her vision in that eye is very diminished (though it doesn't seem to be slowing her down at all, at least yet). My vet did check eye pressure and it was normal, thankfully -- he said elevated pressure would have moved the issue into emergency status. I have a referral to a veterinary opthamologist and will be making an appointment first thing tomorrow morning. Hoping we can get in to see her ASAP.


I don't want to be jumping the gun before we can see the specialist, but it would be very, very helpful to hear from any of you who have experience with this. (I've been telling myself all weekend to not panic.) If you've dealt with this with your pup, what did treatment consist of? Can the lost vision possibly be restored through surgery? And dare I ask, how expensive might this type of procedure be?


Also, I am kicking myself hard; I was pricing out pet insurance just a couple weeks ago, and then a deadline at work went into high gear and took over everything before I made the purchase. I've a hunch I'm really going to regret that... already trying to work out how I'll be able to afford eye surgery for her if that's the course of action.


I know this isn't catastrophic in the bigger scheme of things, but I am worried for my sweet little girl. If there are good thoughts that can be spared for Stella, I'll be very grateful.

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Did the vet check Stella's blood pressure as well as eye pressure? My only experience is with detached retinas in a cat. It was caused by the high blood pressure that was the result of chronic renal failure. The treatment was BP medicine, which had to be started ASAP, like within 48 hours ideally. That brought down the BP and allowed the retinas to reattach.


I don't know of the connection between cataracts and detached retinas, if there is one. (Okay, I just Googled it and the only connection I found was that DR's can result from cataract surgery. She hasn't had that, has she?) So I'd get her BP checked ASAP.

Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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Thank you for the replies and well wishes. Stella's blood pressure was normal, but I appreciate that information.


Her appointment with the opthamologist will be first thing Wednesday (the soonest we could get) and the waiting is hard. She has gotten the go-ahead for the prednisone eye drops we left my vet's office with and had her first drops this afternoon. At least she is her happy self and seems to feel fine.


Would still love to hear from anyone who has dealt with this in a dog... but good thoughts count for a lot, too.

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While I haven't experienced exactly what you're going through, I wanted to let you know that they can cope very well with reduced eyesight. I didn't even know Holly's sight was so bad until she was at the sitter's and I was told she was bumping into things. She's so familiar with our house that we never even noticed anything!



Michelle...forever missing her girls, Holly 5/22/99-9/13/10 and Bailey 8/1/93-7/11/05

Religion is the smile on a dog...Edie Brickell

Wag more, bark less :-)

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We saw an incredibly nice, professional and thorough ophthalmologist and her wonderful assistant this morning, and Stella was a perfect patient...


Unfortunately, her retina is not only completely detached but disintegrated. She has zero vision in that eye, and there is no repair for it. The Dr. is quite certain it is the result of an infection in the past (she also saw some scarring on the retina of Stella's good eye) that likely happened quite some time ago -- before she came home with me, perhaps even before she began her very short racing career. It does put her at increased risk for developing glaucoma in that eye, so we will be following up at 6-8 week intervals to periodically recheck the pressure in that eye. We are also starting Ocu-Glo (an antioxidant supplement) to support continued health of her good eye (if anyone knows of alternate sources, I'd be delighted -- it is $80 for a 45-day supply).


The good news (and what I'm trying to focus on now), is that this loss of vision is not painful to her and has not slowed her down. So long as glaucoma stays away and her left eye stays healthy, I am confident she'll continue to manage just fine.


Thank you all for keeping her in your thoughts.

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Did the ophthalmologist recommend the supplement?


You might want to do some research about it. Only reason I suggest is, many of the supplements marketed for both people and dogs are not based on how biology actually works. The stomach breaks down a lot of things one eats, and taking in more of something that the body balances may be of no use (creatine supplements are a good example).


Hope the other eye remains stable!

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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Thank you for wishing Stella well, Batmom. Yes, the supplement was recommended by the ophthalmologist (20 years practicing), but I appreciate your caution. Here's more information on it; she says they've seen good results from it. At worst, it will be innocuous, but if it helps preserve her remaining sight, it will be worth it.

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Guest TeddysMom

I'm so sorry to read about Stella's eye problems. I am glad that it is not a painful condition and I hope that the glaucoma does not show up.

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We are also starting Ocu-Glo (an antioxidant supplement) to support continued health of her good eye (if anyone knows of alternate sources, I'd be delighted -- it is $80 for a 45-day supply).



There are many different supplements on the market today that contain the same ingredients as Ocu-Glo. Vitamin C & E, Omega fatty acids, grape seed extract, etc. Their claim to fame is a "proprietary blend" containing Lutein (which the others also have). But they say there is not enough Lutein in other supplements. Problem is they won't tell you how much is in theirs. You can buy Lutein all by itself (and all the other ingredients) for a fraction of the cost.


I don't want to discourage you from using this supplement but they charge way too much for it. There is no reason why you should be spending $80.00 every month and a half. Just take their list of ingredients and do some research to see what else is available and then talk to the specialist about substituting it.


Oh and you don't need a prescription for Ocu-Glo but you still may not be able to find a lower price.


Good luck.



Edited by jenn8
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