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Elizabeth Bowers 01-17-2013 11:37 AM

Ulcer in the eye?! ~Graphic~
2 Attachment(s)
Ok so on Jan. 5, my SIL filly managed to injure her eye. Gouging out a chunk about 3/4 of an inch, by 1/4 of an inch. So the next day i noticed it was horribly matted and goopy, and would not open it. It was awful, and i had no idea what to think. So we caught her and called the vet on Jan. 7. It turned out it turned into an ulcer, but it was already in the healing process. So we sedated her, and 'dyed' her eye to see if the eyeball itself was protruding (thankfully it wasn't). And we were given ointment, drops, and banamine paste. I did everything the vet ordered, and kept her in the barn the whole time as well. Here eye still has the blue haze in it, but i think the ulcer itself is gone. But i'm not too sure, since i've never had any experience with something like this. The vet needs to come back down and check her eye, but they seem to keep making excuses to come and check on them. I'm almost at a loss on what to do anymore. If anyone has had any experience with something like this, about how long did it take for it to heal?
Snowy is 2yo, Paso Fino filly, has been in the barn for 11 days now, receiving daily treatments.
Here is her eye on day 2
Attachment 126047
Here is the only pic i could get, she won't let me get anymore pics of her eye. But you can still see the blue haze in her eye, this is day 11. (she's on the left, dark green halter)
Attachment 126048

Thank you for your advice, and help!

MissColors 01-17-2013 11:41 AM

To me it almost looks like a cataract.
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CLaPorte432 01-17-2013 11:47 AM

932 Attachment(s)
Eyes are very sensitive and they can take quite some time to heal. I had an ulcer in my eye and it was horribly painful. Took about a week and 14 days of antibiotics and steroids to get it back to normal. I now have a blind spot (i can only notice it when doing my makeup), and a scar on my eye (not that anyone can tell)

Not sure why the vet wasnt called immediately when she gouged a chunk of her eye out...

But dont be surprised if she has vision loss, and quite a bit due to the severity of the wound. And she may have reoccuring eye problems. A friend of mine had a horse that got ulcers in his eye. He went completely blind and had longterm problems with the eye after that.
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goneriding 01-17-2013 11:51 AM

So the injury caused the ulcer?

Elizabeth Bowers 01-17-2013 12:08 PM

ClaPorte432, I told them to call the vet ASAP!! I had just noticed there was something wrong, seriously wrong!! The vet did mention that she might have partial blindness in that eye, and most likely a scare. Since in was in the lower front corner of her eye it might not bother her as much, and she'd adjust to it. I won't be since they waited to call the vet. :/ I don't know how they're going to handle any long term problems, and possible blindness. I've been administering treatment because they are afraid to do it. :/
MissColors, it is not a cataract, it's a haze from the injury, it's not as bad as it was. It shows that its healing.
Goneriding, yes the ulcer was caused by the injury, the vet told me this several times.

goneriding 01-17-2013 01:04 PM

I didn't know an injury could cause an ulcer. The only experience with eye problems I have had was when my mare had herpes in her eye which are like little ulcers. Interesting....My mare was wonderful at letting me administer eye meds, how was yours?

nvr2many 01-17-2013 01:12 PM

My gelding somehow injured his eye last summer/fall and we did the dye/stain med thing. Kept a fly mask on to keep it protected. It healed and still had a white spot and the vet said it may always be there. I have not noticed it lately tho, so hopefully its gone but it was higher up in the eye so not always visible. Eye injuries almost always ulcerate. That is what they call it when it gets like that.

Elizabeth Bowers 01-18-2013 10:08 AM

Well Goneriding, she isn't mine, she's my sister in laws, and since she's still in school i have to give her her eye treatments everyday (until she gets home), it doesn't help that they are afraid to restrain her to do so too. She's been doing rather well, but since the drop in temps, she's been difficult because she wants to be out of the barn and tearing about the pasture.

beau159 01-18-2013 10:29 AM

I'm not a vet, but I am an eye doctor. And horse's eyes are fairly similar to a human eye in anatomy.

That is not a cataract. A cataract forms in the crystalline lens, which is on the inside of the eye, directly behind the iris (colored part of the eye). An ulcer or abrasion occurs on the cornea, which is the clear part on the very front of the eye.

A scratch or gouge does not cause an ulcer. It causes a corneal abrasion, but which can progress to become infected if not treated. An ulcer forms from an initial infection or inflammation (not from a scratch or abrasion), or in humans an ulcer can result from over-wearing your contact lenses. So there is a difference in terminology between the two in how they are formed, but treatment for the two usually is similar.

In this case, your filly gave herself a large corneal abrasion (gouge in the eye) and then it did get infected (goopy, green discharge).

Get that vet back out NOW. Keep on pestering them and bothering them if you need to. Your filly is already going to have some vision loss if her eye is THAT cloudy on day 11, but maybe you can still make some improvements.

What exact medications do you still have her on? How many times a day?

If this were a human, I most likely would be giving them some sort of steroid eye drop every couple of hours. A steroid is what clears up the inflammation which is what makes the eye cloudy. I'd also be giving an antibiotic every couple of hours or possibly only 4 times a day, depending on how "infected" the eye still is. For a human, you NEVER give an antiobiotic eye drop less than 4 times a day ,or else you create antibiotic resistance. The steroid, however, you will very very very slowly taper off, as you don't want a rebound effect.

Ointments are great for horses, as it's thicker and sticks around longer that a watery-type drop.

acorn 01-18-2013 11:07 PM

Oh I do feel for you.
Last March my mare got an eye infection that turned into an ulcer and ended up at the University. She had to stay there a week. They debrided the eye and she was on four meds that were adminstered five times a day by tube.

When I brought her home she still got the four meds four times a day, still with the tube (wonderful wonderful thing those tubes). When the tube was removed her eye was well. No scar that you can see.

My mare did not do well with a regular fly mask and she would still rub the eye like crazy with one so while she was at the University she wore one of theirs, a hooded thing with a hard dark cover over the injured eye. They were kind enough to loan it to me when I brought her home. I would think your mare should be wearing some kind of protection for that eye.

I have since discovered the Rambo fly mask which seems to make rubbing eyes nearly impossible. I bought her three. I go through the eye thing again if I can help it.

If it were me I'd be all over the vets until they come check that eye out. It does not look good at all. I have seen goats with pink eye whose eyes would look like that but when the infection was cleared the eye became normal looking again.
Please pitch a "hissy" fit and make the vet come check it out. Maybe permanent damage can be avoided or at least held to a minimum.

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