Eye Removal: When There Are No Other Options

Picture of a cat walking down a cat tower with caption, is your cat slowing down?

When a disease is present that results in a blind and painful eye, or when a cancerous growth affects the eye, a surgical procedure may be recommended. One of the following options may be suitable for your pet.

Enucleation (Removal)

This procedure involves the surgical removal of the entire eyeball under general anesthesia. The eyelids are permanently closed to cover the eye socket and a silicone implant is placed to prevent a “caved-in” look. This is a day procedure. Patients are discharged with an e-collar, as well as some oral medications, and will need to return for a post-operative check after fourteen days. Most general practices are capable of performing this surgical procedure, and their fees are likely to be somewhat lower than those at a referral practice. However, not all practices will use the same technique or a silicone implant.

Intra-Scleral Prosthesis (ISP)

This procedure involves the removal of the contents of the eyeball itself, which are then replaced with a silicone implant. The advantages of this procedure, when compared to enucleation, are that the surgery is less traumatic, and the cosmetic appearance is superior as they still appear to have a functioning eye. This is a day procedure. Patients are discharged with an e-collar, as well as some eye drops and oral medications. A post-operative check will be performed after fourteen days.

Pharmacologic Ablation

This procedure involves injecting medications into the eye to destroy or ablate living tissues to regulate pressure. This surgery is only limited to specific cases of glaucoma. While it can be a more cost-effective and less invasive procedure, the success rate is only 85%-90%. The cosmetic appearance of the eye can vary, and enucleation may be necessary in the future. Patients are discharged with eye and oral medications, and a follow-up appointment is scheduled for fourteen days.

How can we help?

Our experienced veterinary team can determine whether enucleation, intra-scleral prosthesis, or pharmacologic ablation are suitable treatment options for your pet. We can also perform these procedures at a high level.

Want to know more about our ophthalmology services?

Download a free PDF version of this blog post: Eye Removal PDF

Need an Appointment