Eye Injury

A 5-month-old Arabian foal was seen for an eyelid laceration.

Because the horse was turned out, no one had witnessed the injury. But,as we all know, if there is something for a horse to cut themselves on, they WILL find it. And this foal certainly did a great job.

To top things off, these photos were taken AFTER 15-20 minutes had been spent cleaning the wound which was thoroughly covered with hay and dirt.
Luckily, a thorough examination revealed that the actual eyeball was not injured at all!

Because the laceration was dirty, it was thoroughly debrided (contaminated tissue was cut off). This made suturing the laceration difficult, as the edges were under A LOT of tension. The foal was stalled and treated with antibiotics and banamine.

Eyelid lacerations are not uncommon in horses and should be treated in a timely fashion. The eyelid serves the very important function of protecting the eye. Therefore, lacerations affecting this area need to be sutured back to together to ensure normal healing and correct function of the eyelid. A horse without a normal eyelid can be prone to corneal injuries which can be quite a problem!

If your horse suffers an injury or laceration near the eye, he/she needs to be seen by a veterinarian. Bad injuries can heal!

The foal was examined two weeks later. The sutures had held! And the wound had healed nicely. The sutures were removed and the foal will be watched closely to ensure that the eyelid continues to heal appropriately.