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Corneal Ulceration in Dogs

By: Dr. Rhea Morgan

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Follow-up care of corneal ulcers is critical. Administer any prescribed medication(s) as directed and be certain to alert your veterinarian if you are experiencing problems treating your dog. Optimal follow-up veterinary care often involves the following:

  • Because uncomplicated ulcers often heal within seven days, all ulcers are rechecked within this time period. More serious ulcers or any ulcer that appears to worsen during treatment are checked sooner and more frequently. At the recheck examination, fluorescein stain is again used to outline the ulcer. Any ulcer that worsens despite appropriate therapy requires further investigation and may warrant referral to a veterinary ophthalmologist.

  • Recheck examinations may also be needed long after the ulcer has healed to monitor for the recurrence of underlying causes, particularly regrowth of eyelashes, possible return of normal blink responses, and changes in tear production.

  • In older dogs or boxer dogs of any age, certain superficial ulcers may persist for greater than 14 days and may be very difficult to resolve. Such ulcers are termed indolent ulcers or persistent corneal erosions. They require additional treatments from those listed above in order to heal.


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