What is Glaucoma?
Shih Tzu glaucoma is a scary eye condition! in which the pressure of the liquids inside the eye (intraocular pressure) raises abnormally.
This is a painful condition that may lead to eye damage and vision impairment if it is not controlled.
The condition is hereditary, meaning it is passed down from either the Mother or Father as most eye problems are.
Glaucoma has two types of onsets, it comes with acute onset, meaning it comes suddenly and quickly. The second is a chronic condition.
Glaucoma is a frequent cause of blindness in both humans and dogs.
Glaucoma usually starts in one eye, then the second eye is then affected.
At what age will Glaucoma appear?
Glaucoma is often seen in middle aged dogs, older than 3 years of age.
It also occurs in female dogs more than males.
What are the disease signs?
Owners first notice that the dog is frequently bumping into objects and notice that the dog has visual problems.
The dog will show an unwillingness to be handled around the face or head, the eyes have a red color and an increased green reflection from his pupils.
Other symptoms like squinting and tearing are also noted. The dog will avoid light and won’t feel comfortable in daylight, if one of these symptoms is noticed, visit your veterinarian immediately.
Causes of Glaucoma?
In normal cases, liquids inside the eye are permanently renewed, meaning a flow of new liquid enters the eye and the old liquids are drained. When the outflow of eye liquids stops, this results in their sudden build up and then symptoms of glaucoma will appear.
Glaucoma may happen secondary to other eye problems like cataract or lens luxation.
It may also be congenital, meaning it appears in newly born dogs.
Is Glaucoma contagious?
It is not contagious.
It is a dangerous condition for eyes, as it soon results in damage to other eye internal structures and can make the dog blind within less than one year from its onset.
Glaucoma is the most painful condition of the eyes.
Is Glaucoma dangerous for my Shih Tzu? Will it make him blind?
Glaucoma is dangerous for all dogs.
Without proper treatment, damage may occur which may result in loss of sight.
Is Glaucoma painful for my Shih Tzu?
Yes. It is painful for all dogs.
The veterinarian will perform an examination of the eyes.
Besides clinical symptoms and eyes enlargement, your vet may measure the pressure on the eye with tonometry (a technique used for measuring eye pressure).
If this pressure is above the physiological threshold, this confirms the condition.
Will Glaucoma go away on its own?
No, it will not.
Glaucoma treatment has many protocols that have to be chosen and discussed with your veterinary ophthalmologist,
Drugs that lower the ocular pressure may be used to relieve the eye pain, but, this relief does not exceed the next few hours.
Topical drops and oral medications must be given 3 times daily.
These drugs help to decrease fluid production and to stop inflammation.
Glaucoma Surgery cost
Glaucoma is treated using long term methods and is an endeavor for owners.
Surgery options are controversial.
Early surgical intervention may permit eye pressure control, there are many surgical approaches used, and each one has its indications.
In severe cases, eye removal may be the best solution to avoid infection and septicemia.
Surgery Success Rate
Surgery success rate is above 60%, but sometimes surgery fails and may be repeated.
An average cost of glaucoma treatment is $1000.
After surgery, recovery is felt and the symptoms gradually disappear.
Nothing can be done to prevent glaucoma because this is a hereditary condition.
If your dog has any medical issue, please consult your own veterinarian for treatment and further advice!