Yes, today's post is about eyes. Specifically, Lily's eyes and mom's eyes. I'll start with Lily since she is more important. She is a cat after all!
For those who don't know, Lily is blind and also has glaucoma. She developed cataracts about two years ago. She could have had surgery to remove the cataracts, but at 14 the eye specialist said she wouldn't recommend it. Lily has adjusted well to her blindness and gets around the house with few problems. Once in awhile she will bump her nose into the wall. She doesn't jump up onto the cat tree any more, but she will jump onto the kitchen stool so she can steal Sable's prescription food!
Lily sees the ophthalmologist about every three months. The doctor checks her eye pressure and looks for any changes. Lily has been getting daily eye drops since she was diagnosed with glaucoma. She has done quite well on them and her dosage was eventually lowered from twice a day to once a day. Eventually a second type of eye drop was added to her treatment.
On May 6th, mom noticed that Lily's left eye looked "off". Mom called the vet's office and talked to the technician. The tech relayed the information to Lily's doctor. It was determined that since Lily wasn't rubbing at her eye and there was no discharge, Lily could wait until May 17th when she had her next appointment.
It was determined this morning that Lily is developing an ulcer on her left eye. She has paralysis on the left side of her face due to nerve damage. The nerve damaged occurred when Lily had surgery to clean out the deformed bones in her left ear (she kept getting abscesses from bacteria growth). Mom knew that the nerve damage was a strong possibility but the surgery was necessary. Unfortunately, Lily's left eye no longer blinks properly. Since the eyelid doesn't blink, her eye dries out, and the dry eye is causing the ulcer to form.
$300 later, mom and Lily left the office with two additional eye drops and an eye gel. Lily isn't hard to handle while getting her drops, but mom feels bad because she is afraid that Lily will start avoiding her. It's a lot of eye drops for a little old lady cat to deal with.
This is what Lily will now get on a daily basis:
Azopt Solution - 1 drop in each eye once a day.
Idoxuridine Solution - 1 drop in each eye twice a day.
Ofloxacin Solution - 1 drop in left eye three times a day.
Sodium Chloride Solution - 1 drop in each eye three times a day. (The vet said this one stings a bit).
OptixCare Gel - small amount in left eye 4-6 times daily.
Mom is hoping that once the ulcer is healed Lily may not need all of the newly added meds. She will probably need the gel for the rest of her earthly days. Also, mom is hoping to go to North Carolina for a week in July. She has already made arrangements to board Lily while she is away. She said it is too much to ask her friend(s) to come over three times a day to take care of Lily. She has a friend who will stop by once a day to pill Johnny and me (I get predisone every other day).
Now, depending on what happens regarding mom and her upcoming EYE SURGERY, her trip to North Carolina may not happen. Like Lily, mom has developed cataracts. It's been going on for several years. Last June mom had an eye exam, got new glasses, and by the end of the year she couldn't see well with them at night. She saw her ophthalmologist in February and he said her cataracts were worse and it wouldn't do any good to change her glasses, however he didn't recommend surgery yet. He wanted to see her again in May. Her appointment was yesterday. Her vision (especially night vision) is worse and he said surgery could be done. Now mom is waiting to hear from the office to schedule cataract surgery for her right eye. Once her right eye has healed, she will have the left eye done.
Mom said the crazy thing is she can read without her glasses unless the print is teeny tiny. But when driving, she can't read signage even with her glasses. She does fine during the day, but the glare from the headlights on other cars is bad. Also, she has "halos" around those same lights. The only real driving she does at night now is picking her brother up at work. It's not too far from our house. And when it rains at night she doesn't want to drive at all.
Mom said, "I'm too young for cataracts." She'll be 57 this summer. We meowed at her to be quiet and be glad she can have something done about it!
I'll keep you posted on further developments.