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Veterinary Ophthalmology in Langhorne, PA

Vet Checking Patient Eye

Specialty Eye Care for Pets

Humans aren’t the only ones who may need to see an eye doctor. Pets like cats, dogs and other animals could suffer from eye conditions that impair their quality of life or health. Veterinary eye specialists help by diagnosing and treating eye conditions in pets, allowing them to live with the best vision possible.

Common Eye Problems in Cats and Dogs

Our team sees many pets every day, and some of the most common eye conditions we treat at BluePearl Langhorne include:

  • Cataracts (clouded lenses)
  • Corneal ulcers
  • Corneal dystrophy/degeneration (clouded cornea)
  • Distichiae and ectopic cilia (abnormal eyelash growths)
  • Eyelid masses
  • Entropion/Ectropion (eyelids rolling in or out)
  • KCS (dry eye)
  • Glaucoma
  • Intraocular masses (tumors)
  • Keratitis (inflamed cornea)
  • Lens luxations (dislocated lenses)
  • Optic neuritis (inflamed optic nerve)
  • Pigmentary keratitis (discolored cornea)
  • Uveitis (inflamed uvea)
  • Retinopathies (damaged retinas)

Cutting-Edge Veterinary Medicine

At BluePearl Pet Hospital in Langhorne, our ophthalmology service offers medically advanced treatments and equipment to improve prognoses, reduce recovery time after a procedure and get your pet back to doing what they love sooner.

Cataract Surgery for Dogs and Cats

Cataracts cause eye lenses to become cloudy, which can lead to blurry vision or loss of sight if not treated. Aging is one of the most common factors in the development of cataracts, as proteins and fibers in the lens break down over time and lead to the cloudiness you may have seen in a senior pet’s eyes. If this process is slow and does not cause vision deficits, intervention is not typically needed.

A tan and black stripped cat with cataracts lays on its side.

But aging isn’t always the cause – some pets, especially breeds with a genetic predisposition to developing cataracts like cocker spaniels, Boston terriers or poodles, may develop cataracts due to genetics or other health conditions like uveitis. Certain systemic diseases such as diabetes mellitus can also cause the rapid development of blinding cataracts.

Depending on how far along the disease is, cataracts can strongly impact your pet’s vision. Left untreated, cataracts can cause discomfort and lead to painful conditions such as glaucoma, lens luxations, hyphema (blood in the eyes) or cause retinal detachments, all of which can lead to complete blindness. To prevent this, our ophthalmology team performs a type of cataract surgery for dogs and cats called phacoemulsification, which can remove cataracts and restore eye health.

During phacoemulsification, our veterinary ophthalmologist uses ultrasonic technology to break down and remove the cataract. Your care team will discuss your pet’s condition and expectations for surgery before the procedure to make sure you know what to expect and how it will affect your pet.

Our Langhorne, PA hospital has a cutting-edge phacoemulsification machine called the Bausch and Lomb Stellaris, which is normally used to remove cataracts in humans. We strongly believe in delivering human-quality medicine to pets because they deserve top-level care and treatment too.A BluePearl ophthalmologist using a piece of ophthalmology equipment.

Cryotherapy for Pets with Eye Issues

Cryotherapy, which relies on frigid temperatures to freeze skin tissue, is used in multiple veterinary specialties. Our ophthalmology team most commonly uses it to remove masses around the eyes that may be cancerous or obstructive to a pet’s vision. Because this procedure is typically performed on the surface of the skin, it is less invasive for pets.

Cryotherapy/cryoablation for cats and dogs may be used for:

  • Removing growths and tumors, especially around the eyelid
  • Freezing off errant eyelashes that cause irritation or inflammation
  • Treating rips and tears, usually of the retina

Reconstructive Surgeries

Some pets may have ocular deformities or abnormalities such as inverted or retracted eyelids, wayward lashes or even lacerations. These could be the result of a medical condition, genetics, an injury or any number of factors. What matters is that they can lead to infections, irritation and even loss of vision if not treated properly.closeup on patient eye exam

Ophthalmic plastic surgeons perform adnexal reconstructive surgeries to correct these abnormalities. For example, cats (and even some dogs, although it’s rare) can have a congenital defect called eyelid agenesis, which means one or both of their eyelids are not fully formed. The pet is unable to fully blink, leading to corneal exposure, irritation and possibly keratitis, which impacts vision. To correct this condition, our experienced veterinary ophthalmologist performs a variety of different reconstructive surgeries. One of the most effective for eyelid agenesis is a lip-to-lid transposition, which involves grafting skin from the upper lip to recreate part of an eyelid.

The BluePearl Langhorne Difference

The dedicated team of specialists, doctors and technicians at BluePearl Langhorne combine advanced medicine and prioritized patient wellbeing to give pets the best care available. Owner education and involvement are important to us, so we practice fear-free techniques and have owners present for exams, including ophthalmic diagnostics where we determine what issues your pet is facing.

Meet Veterinary Ophthalmologist Dr. Martha LowDr. Martha Low is board certified veterinary ophthalmology.

As a veterinary eye specialist at BluePearl Pet Hospital in Langhorne, PA, Dr. Martha Low helps pets throughout the mid-Atlantic region with their eye problems. Whether she’s performing cataract surgery on a senior pet, repairing a cherry eye in a puppy or developing a treatment plan for a cat with feline ocular herpes, Dr. Low and the ophthalmology team bring their compassion and dedication to provide premier care for pets of all kinds.

Dr. Low has cared for many cats and dogs, but some of her most memorable cases are of a slightly more exotic species. Her team recently examined a rescue owl for cataracts and once removed a cataract from a Bobcat living at Lakota Wolf Preserve. When Dr. Low visited the preserve years later, the team there said that the Bobcat, Santa Claws, lived the remainder of her days with her vision intact, and it vastly improved her quality of life.

The most rewarding part of my job is being able to restore vision in pets that were blind. This usually happens after cataract surgery but can happen with other ocular diseases as well. It’s an amazing feeling to see a previously scared or nervous, blind dog leave after cataract surgery bouncing around and so happy to see their owners.

Martha Low, DVM, DACVO, BluePearl Pet Hospital in Langhorne, PA