Swollen Eye - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 12:09 PM Thread Starter
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Swollen Eye

Not that long ago my father was cleaning grain and the wind was blowing the just the right direction to go into my horses corral. I think one of them got it in her eye because her eye was swollen before, and now its tearing up and its giving out a discharge. My mom and I put antibiotics in her eye. Was that the right thing to do? What else can we do?
She would freak out if we put water in it.. so thats out of the question.. any advice will be helpful!
Thank you!

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post #2 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 12:16 PM
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First I would have rinsed it with a solution made especially for eye rinses. Then if that didn't help I would have called the vet. If there is a scratch on the eye from something blowing into it, it needs special eye antibiotics. Also, eye infections can be either bacterial or fungal. With the first, you use antibiotics and with the second, you use antifungals. If you misdiagnose, and use antibiotics when you need antifungals, you allow the fungal infection to go wild.

Since you've already used the antibiotics, I would watch it very closely for the next 12-24 hours and make sure that she's not in pain, there's no more discharge, etc. If it gets better, great. If not, definitely call the vet. To tell whether the eye is still hurting or not, look at the eyelashes of both eyes. They should be symmetrical. If one eye is more wrinkled or eyelashes pointing down instead of out like the "good eye", she's still hurting.

ETA - If it's been a few days that you've seen swelling, you may already have an infection going and it would be good to call the vet. It could be something simple to fix now, that would cause scarring/vision problems/loss of the eye at the worst case scenario if not properly diagnosed or treated.

Last edited by Ladytrails; 10-08-2011 at 12:18 PM.
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post #3 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 06:09 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ladytrails View Post
First I would have rinsed it with a solution made especially for eye rinses. Then if that didn't help I would have called the vet. If there is a scratch on the eye from something blowing into it, it needs special eye antibiotics. Also, eye infections can be either bacterial or fungal. With the first, you use antibiotics and with the second, you use antifungals. If you misdiagnose, and use antibiotics when you need antifungals, you allow the fungal infection to go wild.

Since you've already used the antibiotics, I would watch it very closely for the next 12-24 hours and make sure that she's not in pain, there's no more discharge, etc. If it gets better, great. If not, definitely call the vet. To tell whether the eye is still hurting or not, look at the eyelashes of both eyes. They should be symmetrical. If one eye is more wrinkled or eyelashes pointing down instead of out like the "good eye", she's still hurting.

ETA - If it's been a few days that you've seen swelling, you may already have an infection going and it would be good to call the vet. It could be something simple to fix now, that would cause scarring/vision problems/loss of the eye at the worst case scenario if not properly diagnosed or treated.
Should I send you a picture? that might be easier...

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post #4 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
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Here's a picture of what her eye looks like now, after I scraped all of the goop/discharge that came out of it...

SANY0149.jpg

What should I do? Would holding ice on it help any??

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post #5 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 09:22 PM
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These are good pictures.

I would doubt that she'd let you put ice there, and it wouldn't help if it's an infection.

Her eyelid is swollen and her eyelashes are pointing almost straight down. So, for sure, she is hurting and she's done something to the eye. The swelling could be from rubbing her eye after she got something in it; if it's still teary and oozing anything then she's still having problems. Until you're sure that the sawdust/dirt/seed is out of her eye, you have to assume that she's still got it in there and it scratched her eyeball. An eye injury like this is something for a vet to see. Even if you can't see a scratch, don't assume there isn't one - sometimes it takes a special light and a colored stain for it to show up for the vet.

If it's not getting better really quickly, then whatever it is could become a situation where she could lose her sight or her eye.
Think about when you get an eyelash or dust in your own eye - it only takes a minute for you to get whatever it is out of your eye. So, if this is lasting longer than that, she's still dealing with the debris in her eye or a scratch from the debris.

Also, I can't see her eyeball from this picture but if it's cloudy looking or grayish, that's a definite sign of a medical emergency. (Look at her good eye and compare - that's how you will know if this one is different.)

If she's still oozing or rubbing it or in pain, I would be calling the vet if it were my horse.
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post #6 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ladytrails View Post
These are good pictures.

I would doubt that she'd let you put ice there, and it wouldn't help if it's an infection.

Her eyelid is swollen and her eyelashes are pointing almost straight down. So, for sure, she is hurting and she's done something to the eye. The swelling could be from rubbing her eye after she got something in it; if it's still teary and oozing anything then she's still having problems. Until you're sure that the sawdust/dirt/seed is out of her eye, you have to assume that she's still got it in there and it scratched her eyeball. An eye injury like this is something for a vet to see. Even if you can't see a scratch, don't assume there isn't one - sometimes it takes a special light and a colored stain for it to show up for the vet.

If it's not getting better really quickly, then whatever it is could become a situation where she could lose her sight or her eye.
Think about when you get an eyelash or dust in your own eye - it only takes a minute for you to get whatever it is out of your eye. So, if this is lasting longer than that, she's still dealing with the debris in her eye or a scratch from the debris.

Also, I can't see her eyeball from this picture but if it's cloudy looking or grayish, that's a definite sign of a medical emergency. (Look at her good eye and compare - that's how you will know if this one is different.)

If she's still oozing or rubbing it or in pain, I would be calling the vet if it were my horse.
I really would.. but they're not open tomorrow! I'll wait until Monday and check it out tomorrow. Thank you for your help!

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post #7 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 09:46 PM
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I understand, a Sunday farm call would be an extra $50 here in my area, but the only eye injuries we've had were on weekends so we paid the extra to be sure and save the eye. Here's a good article that explains what I"m talking about - look at the info on corneal ulcer - ulcer in medical language means a scratch, not like an ulcer of a human stomach. That's what I am betting is wrong with your mare. http://www.applesnoats.com/eyeproblems.pdf

Good luck.
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post #8 of 8 Old 10-08-2011, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ladytrails View Post
I understand, a Sunday farm call would be an extra $50 here in my area, but the only eye injuries we've had were on weekends so we paid the extra to be sure and save the eye. Here's a good article that explains what I"m talking about - look at the info on corneal ulcer - ulcer in medical language means a scratch, not like an ulcer of a human stomach. That's what I am betting is wrong with your mare. http://www.applesnoats.com/eyeproblems.pdf

Good luck.
Thank you!

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