Lapis ISSN 2398-2969

Eye: keratitis - overview

Contributor(s): Anna Meredith, Joanna Hedley, Sarah Pellett

Introduction

  • Causes: inflammation of the cornea usually occurs in response to a traumatic insult, or secondary to eyelid deformities.
  • Signs: variable, but may include corneal ulceration, hyperemia, ocular discharge, corneal edema.
  • Diagnosis: full ophthalmologic examination, fluorescein staining, Schirmer tear test/phenol red thread testing/paper point tear testing.
  • Treatment: topical antibiotics, tear replacement therapy, surgical treatment if deep or refractory.
  • Prognosis: good if treated early, but otherwise may progress to corneal perforation.

Presenting signs

Acute presentation

  • Marked belpharospasm and conjunctival hemorrhage.
  • Localized corneal edema and disruption to the corneal surface (ulceration) may also be visible.

Geographic incidence

  • Worldwide.

Cost considerations

  • Inexpensive to treat if detected early and the inciting cause has been addressed.
  • Deeper or chronic non-healing ulcers may, however, require weeks to months of medical/surgical treatment.

Special risks, eg anesthetic

  • None if treated medically.
  • Surgical treatment may require a general anesthetic Anesthesia: general with the associated risk of anesthetic complications.
  • Exposure keratitis may also occur following a general anesthetic; the eyes must be kept lubricated during anesthesia.

Pathogenesis

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Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Sequelae

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Bedard K M (2019) Ocular surface disease of rabbits. Vet Clin Exot Anim 22 (1), 1-14 PubMed.
  • Bourguet A, Guyonnet A, Donzel E et al (2016) Keratomycosis in a pet rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) treated with topical 1% terbinafine ointment. Vet Ophthalmol 19 (6), 504-509 PubMed.
  • Grinninger P, Sanchez R, Kraijer-Huver I M et al (2012) Eosinophilic keratoconjunctivitis in two rabbits. Vet Ophthalmol 15 (1), 59-65 PubMed.
  • Keller R L, Hendrix D V & Greenacre C (2007) Shope fibroma virus keratitis and spontaneous cataracts in a domestic rabbit. Vet Opthal 10 (3), 190-195 PubMed.
  • Venold F & Montiani-Ferreira F (2007) Selected ocular disorders in rabbits. Exotic DVM (1), 32-37.
  • Wagner F & Fehr M (2007) Common ophthalmic problems in pet rabbits. J Exotic Pet Med 16 (3), 158-167 VetMedResource.
  • Jeong M B, Kim N R, Yi N Y et al (2005) Spontaneous ophthalmic disease in 586 New Zealand White rabbits. Exp Anim 54 (5), 393-403 PubMed.
  • Andrew S E (2002) Corneal disease of rabbits. Vet Clin Exot Anim (2), 341-356 PubMed.
  • Bentley E, Abrams G A, Covitz D et al (2001) Morphology and immunohistochemistry of spontaneous chronic corneal epithelial defects (SCCED) in dogs. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 42 (10), 2262-2269 PubMed.
  • Murphy C J, Marfurt C F, McDermott A et al (2001) Spontaneous chronic corneal epithelial defects (SCCED) in dogs: clinical features, innervation, and effect of topical SP, with or without IGF-1. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 42 (10), 2252-2261 PubMed.
  • Sloop G D, Moreau J M, Conerly L L et al (1999) Acute inflammation of the eyelid and cornea in Staphylococcus keratitis in the rabbit. Invest Opthal & Visual Sci 40 (2), 385-391 PubMed.
  • Kern T J (1997) Rabbit and rodent ophthalmology. Semin Avian Exotic Pet Med (3), 138-145 ScienceDirect.
  • Abrams K L, Brooks D E, Funk R S et al (1990) Evaluation of the Schirmer tear test in clinically normal rabbits. Am J Vet Res 51 (12), 1912-1913 PubMed.
  • Bauck L (1989) Ophthalmic conditions in pet rabbits and rodents. Comp Contin Educ Pract Vet 11 (3), 258-266 VetMedResource.
  • Fallon M T, Reinhard M K, DaRif C A et al (1988) Diagnostic exercise: eye lesions in a rabbit. Lab Anim Sci 38 (5), 612-613.
  • Moore C P, Dubielzig R & Glaza S M (1987) Anterior corneal dystrophy of American Dutch belted rabbits: biomicroscopic and histopathological findings. Vet Pathol 24 (1), 28-33.
  • Port C D & Dodd D C (1983) Two cases of corneal epithelial dystrophy in rabbits. Lab Anim Sci 33 (6), 587-588 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Williams D (2006) Ophthalmology. In: Manual of Rabbit Medicine & Surgery. 2nd edn. BSAVA, UK. pp 117-127.
  • Harcourt-Brown F (2002) Ophthalmic Disease. In: Textbook of Rabbit Medicine. Butterworth-Heinemann, UK. pp 292-306.
  • Van der Woerdt A (1997) Ophthalmologic Disease in Small Pet Mammals. In: Ferrets, Rabbits & Rodents - Clinical Medicine & Surgery. 2nd edn. Saunders, USA. pp 421-428.


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