Anterior Lens Luxation

rDVM Quick Reference Guide for this Ophthalmic Emergency

  • Physical Examination
  • Mannitol, If Appropriate
  • Topical IOP Control (Avoid Miotics)
  • Topical Anti-Inflammatories
  • Systemic Anti-Inflammatories
  • Systemic Analgesia
  • Refer to Surgical Intracapsular Lens Extraction and Vitrectomy

Anterior lens luxation occurs most commonly as a result of hereditary weakness or breakdown of the lens zonules that hold the lens in place. This condition is seen most commonly in Terrier breeds, Poodles, Chinese Shar Peis and cattle dogs. Lens luxation may also occur in cats, usually as a consequence of uveitis. A brief physical examination with basic labwork and evaluation of intraocular pressures by rebound/applanation tonometry should be performed. Treatment is primarily aimed at stabilizing the eye for surgical lens extraction. Intravenous mannitol can be used to decrease intraocular pressures if appropriate. Topical carbonic anhydrase inhibitors are recommended, but miotics like latanaprost should be avoided. Topical and systemic steroidal or non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (depending on the patient’s health and physician preference) and systemic analgesia are recommended. Referral for surgical intracapsular lens extraction and vitrectomy is necessary.