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What is the tear film, and why is it important?

HERE'S WHY:

A. The tear film is the liquid coating of the cornea or clear anatomical structure of the eye. As the cornea is an avascular structure with no direct blood supply, it requires the tear film for lubrication and nutrition which are crucial to eye health. If there is an abnormal tear film or a decrease in its three components, ocular surface disease occurs. 

B. The tear film is composed of three integrated layers that work closely together. A disruption in one or more of these layers, greatly affects the quality of the others. 

     1. Lipid layer - thin oily outer layer secreted by the Meibomian glands at the margin of the eyelids. This layer prevents evaporation of the middle aqueous layer. 

2. Aqueous layer - thicker middle layer secreted by the orbital and third eyelid 

lacrimal (tear) glands. This layer provides the necessary nutrients and oxygen needed for a health cornea. 

3. Mucin (mucous) layer - thin inner layer secreted by the goblet cells of the conjunctival tissues. This layer provides a smooth ocular surface (for improved vision) and attracts the aqueous layer to the eye surface. 

2. What are some clinical signs of tear film disease/dysfunction in dogs and cats: 

1. Squinting (increased blinking frequency or holding the eye closed) 2. Rubbing of the eye or face

3. Epiphora (tearing)
4. Thickened and sometimes colored ocular discharge 

5. Red eye (irritation and redness of the conjunctival tissues)
6. Corneal scarring (fibrosis or pigmentation)
7. Corneal erosion or ulceration (a wound of the corneal surface) 

8. Decreased vision 

3. What are some clinical conditions or eye diseases that can adversely affect the tear film? 

A. Eyelid inflammation - allergies, self-trauma (rubbing), infections, tumors.
B. Eyelid surgery - cryotherapy, mass/tumor removal.
C. Corneal inflammation - dry eye, breed-related exposure, immune mediated 
(Pannus).
D. Corneal surgery - corneal grafting surgeries.
E. Cataract surgery
F. Conjunctival inflammation - infections (feline - herpesvirus,             mycoplasma, 
chlamydia), Pannus, dry eye.
G. Conjunctival surgery - mass removals, biopsies, conjunctival grafting. 

If your pet has been diagnosed and suffers from an abnormal tear film, very recent peer-reviewed studies have shown Vizoovet to be safe and effective.

Please consult your veterinarian or veterinary ophthalmologist and ask if Vizoovet is a good choice for your pet. 

Vizoovet IS Safe For All Species

References from the studies that produced this document the studies making available for download here: Vizoovet handout vets1 (docx)


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VIZOOVET IS HELPING AUSTRALIAN FIRE VICTIMS

When we heard of this natural disaster, we were one of the first to send supplies over to help the animals cope with dry and irritated eyes due to close exposure to fire and smoke and in many cases burn injuries.

Pet owner education with a dash of humour 🤓

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