Veterinarian examining cat with sore eye
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Hyphema (Blood In The Front Of The Eye) In Cats: Symptoms, Causes, & Treatments

Hyphema in cats is a medical condition where blood makes its way into the front chamber of the eye. Pet parents often detect it in their cats by the visible presence of blood in the eye, which may be appear in varying degrees.

The condition can also be an indicator of a debilitating underlying medical issue.

If you see signs that your feline might have blood in their eye or eyes, then you must consult your veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and course of treatment. Here’s what you should know about the symptoms, causes, and treatments of hyphema in cats.

Symptoms Of Hyphema In Cats

Hyphema in cats brings on symptoms affecting the eye. Some of the most common symptoms include:

  • Blood being visible in the eye
  • Impaired vision
  • Lesions on the cornea
  • Elevated eye pressure

Causes Of Hyphema In Cats

Veterinary doctor checks eyesight of a cat of the breed Cornish Rex in a veterinary clinic
(Picture Credit: SbytovaMN/Getty Images)

There are a number of potential causes of hyphema in cats. Some of the most common causes include:

  • Trauma to the eye
  • Retinal detachment
  • High blood pressure
  • Parasitic infection
  • Eye defects (including glaucoma and retinal dysplasia)

The issue can also be a signifier of a serious underlying condition that may even be life threatening if left untreated, so it’s vital to consult with your vet if you see any of the previously mentioned symptoms in your kitty.

Veterinary Treatments

If you suspect that your cat is suffering from hyphema, your veterinarian will want to carry out a full physical examination. They’ll take blood tests and send them to a lab for analysis, and they may also recommend X-rays and ultrasounds.

If necessary, your vet may monitor your cat’s blood pressure. They’ll also ask questions about your kitty’s medical history and any other symptoms that might point to a specific secondary condition.

When providing treatment, reducing any inflammation of the eye is usually a first step. Next, the vet will address any underlying causes. In many cases, vets can use eye drops, including atropine and corticosteroid eye drops.

When a cat is undergoing treatment, it is often necessary to curb their exercise in case there are any blood clotting issues at play. Additionally, if your cat’s vision has become impaired, it is best to keep them inside during the recovery period.

Has your cat ever developed hyphema? How did your vet treat your cat’s eyes? Tell us all about it in the comments below.

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