Blepharoplasty: An Eye Surgery To Fix Eyelids Disorders In Dogs
Blepharoplasty helps to treat eyelids disorder in dogs. In this technique, eyelids are restored to their normal position through small incisions.
In dogs, eyelids disorders (ectropion and entropion) are similar to that in humans. Blepharoplasty surgery is performed to fix these eye disorders. One can better call it cosmetic or plastic surgery technique. This essential plastic surgery for pets includes droopy eyelids fixing and removing excess skin, muscle, and fat. It is a standard but major eye surgery procedure for dogs. Anesthesia injecting is necessary before carrying out the procedure so that the pet does not feel pain or cause any trouble during surgery. Usually, it is not a painful procedure, yet the pet may get swelling around its eyes for at least 24 hours after the surgery. Veterinarian doctors suggest eyelid blepharoplasty for pets as it involves fewer incisions and follows quick recovery.
Signs Of Eyelid Disease In Your Pet
Just like humans, pets can suffer from various eye and eyelid diseases that may require veterinary attention. Here are a few signs that your pet may be suffering from eyelid disease:
- Abnormal Eyelid Appearance: If you notice changes in the shape, color, or general appearance of your pet's eyelids, this may be a sign of a problem. These may include drooping eyelids, eyelid thickening or hardening, and swelling.
- Excessive Blinking Or Squinting: pets may blink or squint excessively if they suffer from eye disorders caused, for example, by eyelid disease.
- Lacrimal Secretions Or Tear Stains: unusual eye discharge or persistent tear stains under the eyes may indicate an underlying problem.
- Rubbing Or Scratching The Eyes: if your pet constantly rubs or scratches his eyes, it may mean he's experiencing discomfort or itching, which may be due to a problem with the eyelids.
- Redness Or Inflammation: Persistent redness or inflammation in or around the eye may indicate an eyelid problem.
- Visible Lump Or Mass: A lump or mass on or near your pet's eyelid may indicate a condition such as a cyst, nodule, or chalazion.
- Changes In Eye Position: changes in the eye's position in the socket, for example, if the eye is more prominent or sunken than normal, may indicate an eyelid problem.
- Loss Of Hair Around The Eye: loss of hair or fur around the eye can also indicate a possible eyelid problem.
Remember: if you notice any of these signs, you should consult your vet as soon as possible. Early detection of eyelid problems can lead to more effective treatment and a better outcome for your pet.
Types Of Blepharoplasty Surgeries
Blepharoplasty treatment can be classified into different categories depending on the specific eyelid condition they aim to correct. Here are some of the most common types of blepharoplasty operations for dogs:
1. Entropion Surgery:
Entropion is a condition in which the eyelid (usually the lower eyelid) rolls inward, causing the fur to rub against the cornea, resulting in discomfort and possible injury to the eye. In this surgery, a small skin area near the affected eyelid is removed, returning it to its normal position.
2. Ectropion Surgery:
Ectropion is the opposite of entropion; it is a condition in which the eyelid (usually the lower eyelid) falls or curls outward, exposing the eye and inner eyelid. This condition can lead to dry eyes and persistent infections. Ectropion surgery usually involves tightening the eyelid and underlying muscles to correct its position.
3. Blepharoplasty Surgery For Eyelid Growths:
If your dog has a growth or tumor on the eyelid, it can be surgically removed. The other procedure to remove them is through reconstruction. The surgery consists of removing the growth and may require reconstruction of the eyelid if a larger portion needs to be removed.
4. Distichiasis/Ectopic Cilia Surgery:
Miscarried and ectopic eyelashes are conditions in which extra (miscarried) eyelashes or hairs (ectopic eyelashes) grow in abnormal positions and cause eye irritation. Surgical removal of these abnormal hairs can help relieve discomfort and prevent corneal ulceration.
5. Cherry Eye Surgery:
Cherry eye is a condition in which the gland of the third eyelid falls out and becomes visible. The most common surgical correction is repositioning the gland and fixing it.
It is important to note that each procedure requires proper diagnosis by a professional veterinarian or veterinary ophthalmologist. Surgery is not always the first line of treatment, especially in less severe cases, and may be combined with other treatments such as medications or therapeutic eye drops. As always, the health and well-being of the animal are the first criteria to consider when choosing a treatment plan.
What Does Blepharoplasty Surgery Involve?
A proper blepharoplasty treatment involves physical and vision examination. Physical examination includes testing the dog's tear production and measuring the length of the eyelids. While in vision examination, veterinarians examine the eyes and peripheral vision of the pet. Photography from different angles is also performed. After a complete diagnosis, small incisions are made to cut and remove the extra skin and fats. Next, the skin is fixed back to its normal position with sutures. Blepharoplasty surgery cost is $1,000.00 for one eyelid and $300.00 for an additional eyelid
The Post-Operative Care of Blepharoplasty Surgery
After Blepharoplasty surgery for eyelids disorders, your pet's recovery will largely depend on post-operative treatment.
Following your veterinarian's instructions carefully is very important to ensure a rapid and successful healing process. Below are some general recommendations for post-operative Care:
Medication: Your vet will probably prescribe painkillers to keep your pet comfortable during recovery. He may also prescribe antibiotics to prevent infection. Make sure you administer these medications exactly as instructed.
Monitor the surgical site: Monitor the surgical site daily for signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, pus, or an unpleasant odor. Slight swelling and redness may be expected, but if they worsen, consult your veterinarian.
Eye care: your vet may prescribe eye drops or ointment to prevent dryness and aid healing. Be sure to apply them as prescribed.
Rest and activity restrictions: your pet needs plenty of rest after the operation. Restrict activity as much as possible to avoid accidental trauma to the surgical site. This may mean limiting play and walks for a few days.
A tapered collar (Elizabethan collar): To prevent your pet from scratching and rubbing his eyes, he may need to wear an electronic collar (also known as a cone collar or "cone of shame") until he is completely healed.
Follow-up vet visits: your vet will probably schedule follow-up visits to monitor your pet's progress and remove stitches if they don't heal.
Feeding: depending on the type of surgery, your pet may have specific dietary needs or restrictions. Depending on the type of surgery, your pet may have special conditions or requirements.
Comfort: Keep your pet's bed or favorite spot clean and easily accessible.
Remember that pets are unique and may react differently to surgery and healing. Always follow your vet's instructions, and don't hesitate to contact him if you have any doubts about your pet's recovery.
Blepharoplasty Risks And Complications
Although it is an effective surgical procedure to fix eyelids disorders in pets, there are still some risks and complications. Infection, bleeding, dry and irritated eyes, difficulty in closing a dog's eyes, scarring, injury to eye muscles, skin discoloration, temporarily blurred vision, loss of eyesight, blood clots, and other eyelids problems are common risks and complications of this surgical procedure. However, the risk of blindness is in sporadic cases. In addition, breathing problems and unresponsiveness are also common risks resulting from blepharoplasty dog.
How To Reduce Risks & Complications?
Minimizing the surgery's risks and complications is crucial so that the pet does not suffer too much during or after the procedure. One can reduce the above risks by following pre-operative, intra-operative, and post-operative precautions. Always attend a well-reputed veterinarian for your dog, as blepharoplasty is not a simple procedure. Moreover, keep your dog comfortable after the blepharoplasty surgery to avoid complications. Clean the skin around its eyes regularly with damp cotton balls. Ice therapy also helps in reducing swelling and infectious problems. Finally, ensure all the medications and precautions your vet recommends after the surgery.
Among five surgical procedures for pets, blepharoplasty is considered the most effective. Blepharoplasty surgery is the best option whether the disorder is hereditary or acquired. But still, always follow your veterinarian's recommendation to fix the disorder.